Saturday, March 19, 2016

My Daughter's Sexual Abuse: How My World Imploded, Day 1

TRIGGER WARNING. So much a fucking trigger warning.

We all watched Gaga at the Oscars through tears as she sang Til It Happens To You. I cannot imagine what sexual abuse victims go through. I have seen sexual abuse from a different angle. My daughter is a victim. Her abuser, perp, and rapist was my husband. The man that got down on his knees and gave her a necklace at our wedding because we were a "package deal." This man that I had promised to love and cherish, "'til death do we part." This man that I trusted with my whole being. This man with whom I had discussed my number one fear: of someone hurting my daughter. This man. My husband. My second child's father. The head of the household. The provider.

I promise you that I did, and still do, everything that I can for my daughter. I don't pretend to have any idea what she's going through. This is not her story. This is my story. This is sexual abuse from the point of a mother that had no damn idea what was going on. My daughter will tell her story when she's ready, but this is mine. It will make you angry. You will call me selfish. It should make you angry, and I know how selfish some of this is going to sound. But it's honest. It's raw. And I have no doubt that someone reading this is going through the exact same thing right now. Momma, I want you to know that this is not your fault. Here we go...

I was a stay-at-home mother, and I loved it. Not every single minute, of course, but most of them. I adored my husband. I tried to be supportive. I took my role as a housewife seriously. My nickname in high school was Suzie Homemaker. I like this stuff, and I'm good at it. We were in a hard place financially, and maritally, and I was taking the blame for that because I was still heavy. I was trying to "get my body back" after having a second child. It's a fair bit harder at thirty than twenty-one!

It's June. We're home from an appointment and I had given in to a request for Wendy's. My two babies and I are sitting at the dining room table eating lunch. This is the last beautiful moment before our world broke. I'll never forget it for as long as I live.

My gorgeous daughter, over a fucking Wendy's hamburger, asked how she could get "Daddy" to leave her alone. I just looked at her. I know she must have thought I was crazy. I had a completely blank look on my face. I had no idea what she meant. I asked. And she told me. (I'll spare you the details because I want you to be able to sleep tonight.) I told her that I would take care of it, and it would never happen again. She happily bounced to her room to play. She looked relieved, I guess.

Reeling, I spent the next twenty minutes putting my baby down for a nap and trying to keep my shit together. I was thinking, "Surely she's not serious. Surely not. This can't be happening. This doesn't happen to normal people. How in the hell did I not see this? I'm going to kill that motherfucker with my bare hands. My baby girl … oh god, my son."

I called the only person I could think of and interrupted his day. I told him what was going on. He never once asked if I thought she was lying. Thank God. I went in to talk to my girl. Got a few details. Got enough to know that this was real. This was really happening. Children don't make this shit up. They have no frame of reference for it. I sent my husband a text: Don't ever come back to this house. He knew. He knew that I knew. I got five phone calls right in a row. I didn't answer a single one. He left me one voicemail: "I can explain."

NO. NO. NO. If he were innocent, he would have asked me what the fuck my problem was; he would have asked me why I had lost my damn mind. "I can explain." That undid me. In that moment, I got more confirmation that this was really happening.

I called my mother, and she immediately left work and came to me. The next few hours were a blur. I don't really know what I expected to happen next. I was angry. I couldn't stop crying. I had an overwhelming sense of guilt. How did I not see this? How did I not know that something like this was going on in my own house?

I received a call saying that the police had been called and to expect them soon. No matter what you expect, you're not ready for this. Detectives and uniformed police arrived. Then CPS. The CPS van pulled up, complete with car seats in the back. I almost threw-up. I was terrified that they were going to take my children. That poor woman had to assure me three times that she wasn't. Everyone was so kind. They knew what they were doing. Unfortunately, they had done this before. My daughter had to disclose to the CPS agent what happened. The detectives talked to me. Just from what my daughter had told them, there was enough for "Simple Battery." What?

Finally everyone left. I had given my statement. I had filled out paperwork. Then the detective called. He wanted to come talk to me again.


He came back to my house to tell me that my husband had confessed to everything and that he was in jail. There were now different charges. Eight counts of child rape. All of this happened in a span of eleven hours.

And then I cried myself to sleep.

It wouldn't be the last time...

We'll be sharing the remainder of CJ's story with you in the coming weeks. Please join us in keeping her and her daughter in your thoughts and prayers. Much love and admiration to her for sharing her journey with all of us.


  1. You wished so much that you could have protected your baby from this hurt and pain...I too would give my life to protect my baby from having to go through this with her baby girl.
    This mother is so unbelievable proud of you for your strength, courage and showing your daughter that you will stop at NOTHING and will give up EVERYTHING to protect her. You my darling daughter are a BAD ASS...and I have never been more proud of anyone.

  2. GIRL. I *knew* this story, and it's still killing me to read parts of it again.
    Just know that you and your family are DEEPLY, FULLY loved by so many, and have a very large cheering squad.
    you are BRAVE to tell this story.

  3. Bravery beyond words- both you and your daughter. Keep your chin up!

  4. I do know how you feel. My children were abused by my brothers. I am still sick.
    I did not know until they were grown. Both have suffered in silence for years.i cannot believe I did not know. They were told not to tell me because I would be very angry.

  5. You, my dear friend, (as your mom already said) are a complete and total BAD ASS!! Never in my mind did I doubt that you would, and will continue, to do everything possible for your babies.

    I am so proud of you...from the moment the you told me what was happening and that you didn't know exactly what to do next. I had 4 thoughts 1) "oh my dear God I'll kill him", 2) "not my friends...not people I've shared life with", 3) "how can I get to her? I need to be there." and 4) "She's doing this the right way!!"

    I can't imagine the pain that you've experiencedone through this whole situation and I won't say I understand. Just know that the people around you love you. Even from 1100 miles away, I love you and would do anything for you!

  6. I wish I could write something to help, I have no words. I offer my respect for you, friendship,. and my prayers for your and your daughters healing. Whatever I can do, I'll even shut my mouth and just listen. Love you...E.