So…there is only one person in my life that knows this story and it is my best friend. I have told NO one else. I thought I would share because I know you all will listen and hopefully support me. I was molested by my 13 year old cousin when I was 8 years old.
My family goes on a camping trip every summer and my dad’s brother and his kids come along with us. The year I was molested, all of kids were under the age of 13, so the “boy” tent and the “girls” tents were not designated. My brother, my cousin Kacie, and my cousin Michael were int he tent that I slept in. That night everyone went to sleep, or what I thought.
I had awoken to someone on top of me, it was Michael. He was making out with my lifeless, sleepy body. My mouth was forced open by his hands so he wasn’t making out with just my teeth. His hands were running up and down my legs. I remember the feeling of my fleece pajama pants being scrunched up as he went up and down my legs. Then his hand went towards my vagina. His hand went in my underwear and he fingered me. I had not fully awoken yet because I was a heavy sleeper as a kid, but I remember being drowsy and not knowing what was happening. I honestly thought I was having a bad dream. I kept thinking, why would someone want to put their finger up there?? I was 8 years old, I had no idea what anything sexual was. I was not told about sex and foreplay until I was 10 years old. I did not know what he was doing was wrong, I just thought it was strange. I could not move because his body was so heavy on top of me. He just kept making out with and running his hand up and down my legs and shirt while fingering me at the same time. I had finally fully awoken and realized that this was not normal. He pulled down my pants and his body weight finally was not on me. I finally could move so I rolled over to signal to him that I was waking up. I was too shy at 8 years old to yell or scream or even say stop. I just rolled over hoping that I would scare him off. It worked. He backed off and continued outside to pee. When he came back in the tent, I “woke up” and told him that I felt like I was going to vomit. He just told me to sleep if off. So I did. I cried myself back to sleep and woke up the next morning pretending like nothing happened.
The reason I have not told anyone is because I did not remember this event happening until I dreamt about it one day about 4 years ago. It was so traumatic to me that I literally blocked it from my memory. When it came back to me however, I realized that after all these years I have not gotten the help I should have gotten right after it happened. I have had continuous nightmares regarding this day. It is the same dream every single time. Replaying that night over and over again. I have not told my parents because he is my cousin. If they found out they would never speak to his brother’s family again. I don’t want everyone in my family as well as extended family to find out because I’m embarrassed. I am not the type of person that likes attention so telling my parents wouldn’t help. The other reason I haven’t told anyone is because there are so many other cases like this out there that are far worse. So many people have been raped, sexually assaulted, held at gunpoint, etc. I didn’t think mine was a big deal compared to all of these other survivors stories. I guess it is a big deal though because it came back to me after all of these years and I am struggling to heal from it.
Thank you all for reading my story. I feel like I am taking a step into my recovery just by sharing this story on this site.
— Survivor, age 19