The day my mom was in the hospital giving birth to my brother, I was 3 months away from being ten. She had to stay in the hospital for 3 days. I woke up the next morning excited to go to the hospital to see my mom. My step dad came to get me so I could get dressed and to have me take the trash out. Well when I got in the bed room he asked me if I wanted to watch a movie before I got dressed and took trash out. I of course said yes because who doesn’t love watching movies with a family member. He had me watch a movie that when I got older I realized was a porno. He then had me trying something that I saw in the video, again which I found out when I was a little older was oral sex. He told me that this was our little secret and no one else had to know. Being as young as I was at the time I trusted him that it was nothing bad and it was just a secret game. This kept going on until I was a little older and he started to force me to go further, he then started making me have anal sex with him. At this time he had already hit my mom and choked her so I was terrified to say anything to anyone. Then one day he told me he was going to make me have sex with him and I threatened to run away. I never told my mom why and I got grounded. I was no longer allowed to leave and spend time with friends, I could not go see my grandparents or anything, I was help captive in my house like it was a jail cell. I had to sneak out to see my friends outside of school. When I was in junior high he forced me to lay on the bed and have sex for the first time. Every time I moved or tried to fight back he would hit me. I was covered in bruises and when my mom asked I told her I got them from softball practice. I had went to school the next day and could barely move and my best friend was talking to me. I told her what happened but I made her promise not to say anything to anyone that I was scared and I would tell someone when it was not as dangerous. I guess part of me hoped she would tell someone because I was to scared to say anything. She never told anyone she kept her promise to me even when we got to the point where we fought a lot, but we are still best friends and things between us are a lot better now. Anyways when I was a freshman in high school which means I was about fifteen, I told my friend what was going on because she asked what was going on. I had an emotional break down in class that day. She told me to tell someone or else she would. So i went to my therapist and told her everything, she called the cops and I had to go into a room in the school and talk to them. They called my mom and she was with my brother’s dad/step dad. they took him on a walk around the school so they could take her in the room I was in to tell her what was going on. They had him go to the police station to question him after they had gotten the condom he had used the last time he raped me. He admitted to it and I had to go through numerous tests for a rape it. We went to court and he was sentence for 2 counts of child molestation and 3 counts of sexual misconduct with a minor. He took the plea and got 23 years in prison. This sexual abuse happened to me for five years because I was scared to say anything. When all the kids saw the news paper they knew it was me because where I live is a small town and everyone knows everyone. I got made fun of by the kids in school already before the news on a regular basis and after the news it got twice as bad. As to this day 4 years later I am still scared. I have terrible night terrors of what he did, or what I imagine what he will do if he got out. He sent me a Christmas card last year and my mom hid it from me. It bothers me that she did not tell me because I am scared that he knows where I am.
— Survivor, age 19