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My wifes Step Dad sexually abused her at 13.
April 5, 2007
9:39 am
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door1
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Hello,
Can any one here give me any help on this situation. My wonderful wife of 15 years was sexually abused by her step dad when she was 13.The step dad was taken out of the house by police and put in jail.However her mother said she (her daughter at 13) was to drop all charges against him so she could have her husband back.The house was to say the least disfunctional in my opinion. A few years later her sister died which her mother blamed her for, which was not her fault in the least.My wife and I got married 15 years ago. It was a week before We were going to marry when she told me this story,(there is a lot more than what I sad here but I'll try and keep it brief.)I accepted this and figured it was in the past.However she would always refer him as Dad which her biological dad had died a year ago. So me thinking he was gone we could work this out. Well After the wedding I find out it was her step dad that did this to her. And I was confused at the time and very angry. However I loved my Wife and she told me we'll work this out just don't tell any one or you might cause a rukis.So I kept my mouth shut for 15 years- so far. We do have 2 children.Our youngest was diagnosed with leukemia when he was 3 with no help at all from any of her parents we relied on my family.We struggeled with this for 7 years.He's doing fine now after a bone marrow transplant.I've been to couseling with all of these issues but my wife will not go with me. The big problem I am having with this is instead of working on the problems in our marrage that I feel are directly connected with this incident she insists on a friendly relationship with her step dad and refuses to distance herself. I'm really confused. I thought if you were sexually abused, which she was, you kinda distance yourself from this person.PLEASE give some kind words in this situation.

April 5, 2007
9:48 am
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mamacinnamon
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I am probably not a good one to reply since this is not an area I have no first hand knowledge of. But, here goes a little I do know.

My opinion, things I've been told, is there is a sense of obligation or responsibility because the abuser was the parent figure. I don't know. I do know that I have heard many times from women I have talked w/ that they "would not do w/o a man" even tho their child was molested by that person. Seems to most always run the same.

It is up to your wife who she does or does not have a relationship w/, but when it comes to your kids you have a direct say and I'd never let my child near anyone that I knew to have molested anyone before.

Anyway, I will not comment more since I have not the knowledge to do so. But I did want to say to you that you are in a good place; a safe place. Nice to meet you, just with it were under better circumstances.

April 5, 2007
10:31 am
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door1
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Thank you for the kind responce.
Yes; my wife feels a responsibility towards him. She has to constantly try and impress him for no reason. With her work and just about everything she does.I do know it is up to my wife and I do respect her. But how can I help her.She gets very depressed at times and sometimes she will talk about it. But when I give some suggestions she clams up and it's almost like she gets angry with me. He has some kind of control on her. My wifes Mother and her stepdad since divoced, I even mentioned, now that your mother dumped him can you? And all I got was a sour look.He since got a new girl friend and she hates me because I won't have that son in law relationship with him.He has no job and sponges of his parents.My wife even went as far as saying if I win the lottery I would help my step dad out of dept. I did put a foot down on that. It really goes on and on. She is really a very nice woman and it's soooo sad to have this creep in her life.I even asked her if these were really her parents because they are so different from her. Once again thank you for listening. If any one has more ideas or just something to say I would appreciate it.

April 5, 2007
10:59 am
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lettingo
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door1,
I can relate because I was molested by a grandfather but never said anything for almost 10 years. It came out and things got a little crazy but then that was that. I still loved him very much. I don't know if it's denial or what but I just put the incidents in the past. Unforunately, the emotional damage was much worse than I thought. It's not something you can just put behind you. It has lasting effects which I am still dealing with until this day. I too deal with depression which is just another side effect of being abused. I really never tackled the whole molestation thing in therapy but I am just letting you know, I can related to your wife.

April 5, 2007
11:16 am
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ScaredinMichigan
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door1,

First, welcome to this site. The people here are wonderful, and many of them may have insight that they are willing to offer on this topic.

I have been in this situation. To start with...it isn't just as easy as letting go. To go to counseling means to deal with it, and sometimes that seems tougher than living with it. As adults we know that to be heard is power, but having been abused, to speak is to become VULNERABLE, weak, and exposed. It is a scary world. ESPECIALLY to a person that has been told to "drop all charges", lie, shut your mouth, it is hard. Your security in the truth is gone. Your families should be who you can trust the most, and so many of us have been destroyed, robbed of our security, our validation thrown out the windows...by who...OUR FAMILIES. The very people that we should be able to trust. We have grown to have a fear of the people that we love, yet, we want to love them, we want them to love us, we don't want to believe that they would hurt us. There are SO many things involved here.

Hold your wife tight. Love her, validate her, trust her, support her. Thank God you know what she has been through. A LOT of us out there never tell the people in our lives. It says a LOT about you, that she trusted you with this information. Consider yourself blessed. I hope one day I have the courage to share my story with my husband.

Bless you for supporting her. There need to be more people like you out there. It says so much about you. Take care, and I hope that you get the help that you are looking for here.

Mich

April 5, 2007
11:53 am
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door1
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Thank You so very much. WOW those are powerful come backs thank you.And I WILL give my wife a big hug.I feel so helpless. I do feel the pain she is in at times. And like a lot of men, they just want to fix the problem so it just goes away.Oh how I wish it were that simple.It just seems like everyone in her family just goes on with life as if nothing happened, and my wife is suffering so much. It really hurts to see this.(it makes me cry alot.)I guess I'll hope and pray for the best.What a wonderful group of people on this site. And any other comments or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks again.

April 5, 2007
4:58 pm
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ScaredinMichigan
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door1....

I have thought about this situation quite a bit throughout the day. Would you consider telling her about this site where she coould have a group of people that understand her. Here there is such a large group of people that are at such different points in their healing...that it could be VERy helpful to her to know that she isn't alone.

Now, I would understand if you wanted to continue to post here as this could be a support system to you as well. It was just a thought. There are a LOT of people here who care, and are supportive and everything else. People that have been where she is.

Anyway...just a thought that I was carrying around for a while. Truly, we are nameless and faceless. But we care a lot. As I said also....a LOT of us have been where she is...a LOT of us.

Trying to help...

Mich

April 6, 2007
1:31 am
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happy2Bfree
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I guess I have a different take on this situation. Yes you should support your wife. You have a responsibility as a husband to do that. But she has a responsibility to get well; to become a whole and fully-functioning person so that your relationship can flourish.

You cannot improve the situation if you are the only one getting therapy. Therapy will teach you how to cope with the dysfunction of others, but only they can address their own dysfunction.

Her refusing to get help may leave you feeling helpless and trapped and the worst feeling in the world is feeling trapped with no control over your own life.

I don't know what this hold is the stepdad has on your wife, but neither does she and only a qualified therapist can get to the root of this.

She may think she's gotten over the betrayal from her mom and stepdad but she has not which is evident in many ways including the depression.

I agree that maybe you should get her to start reading this site starting with the letter you wrote and the responses received. Maybe if she sees that you were concerned enough
to sit down and seek the advice of others, she will understand how much you are hurting for her.

I wish you well. You seem like a wonderful husband and you and your wife deserve to be happy.

April 6, 2007
6:20 am
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nvr2late
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I have a little advice on this...although I am not sure that I have handled it well either..I had this happen to me with my step-father, no police involved...but I did tell my mother and she said..'why are you doing this to me???' and I felt terribly guilty (I did not tell her until after I was married)...

I felt very betrayed by my mother.
and I did not understand it..
so, I felt that I had to let it go and turn my cheek..I felt like it was my fault.

after that marriage ended..and now my 15 year marriage ended...
it is tough for me to trust anyone, my MOTHER betrayed me!!!

but there is a lot of guilt and a lot of 'having to let things go'
women have a way of down-playing things...which I have my whole life..'it was not his fault, it was something I did..' we take on a lot of guilt!!!

i have a 12 year old daughter..and believe me, I am super sensitive to the people I bring into her life..and I watch all kinds of signs.

she is trying to move on and not hold grudges, it sounds like...
you have to be mad..but let her deal with how her anger comes out.
it will...

as for me, my step-father has helped me out a lot, I have learned to forgive...maybe bury it?
but, that is how I cope..

she needs to deal with her feelings in the way she knows how..you need to be supportive.

I hope this helps, I have never revealed this on this site and there are not many people that know...
it is a really tough place to be at, not to be able to trust anyone.

please be patient with her!!!

nvr

April 6, 2007
9:02 am
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door1
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Thanks again for your support. I will talk to her about this site.As a matter of fact I have discussed with her today we need to have one day where we have the whole day to ourselves and just talk no phones no kids no work just talk. We have'nt tried this in a while.In reading the last 2 responses I have to say this is all about what it is in a nutshell. happy2Bfree hit it right on the head about what I am going throught and what I think she should do. And nvr2late with her responce hit it on the head also almost discribing to a tee what my wife is feeling.I know everyone is different on how they look at this situation but as a husband and a father I have to say it is very hard to look at my wife and know what she has went through in her life and what she is going through now and just say I'll stand here and just hope you get better some day. You know that is just so hard to do. I really need to help her in a good way.It just seems just being supportive is not good enough, Well I just think there has to be more I can do.Some of you suggested I let her do it her way and the anger will release. 15 plus years seems to be a long time to try and figure it out.But I'm just a man I do try and understand my wife and sometimes I say oh well she's a woman I'm a man this is the way it must be. I will however continue to be patient with her.If that is all I can do I will continue. Thank you ladies so very much. You do not realize what how this helps.

April 6, 2007
10:06 am
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hopeful for change
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Well reading your story..I really feel for you and your wife.

I was molested by my grandfather for eight years. The thing is this screws up stuff in our minds so much, a simple reply on here can't possibly explain.

When someone who "loves us" does this, it hurts us so deeply and confuses us, and the whole meaning of love, our self esteem...everything. Then when we tell someone and they support the abuser, this is like being punched in the face. I am so sorry that her mom did this. I personally would have rathered him die, and would have probably tried to kill him myself. So your wife was forced to live with it and act as if it was nothing, this is bs.

She was let down by both parents. That is such a crime. Then we as the victims, are somehow punished or treated like we are the ones who did something wrong.

I don't see how she could have anything to do with either parent. But maybe why she refuses counseling, is because she has such a wall built up around it, the wall is so high, and she knows what will happen when it comes down. I am surprised this hasn't manifested into a physical ailment really. i am also surprised she has found such a wonderful husband that is kind and caring, I don't know of very many men, who want to talk, let along, be the one to bring it up.

It is so confusing, and she has really been screwed around by her family. I do believe in forgiveness, because it is what set me free. But not a continued relationship with someone like this, no way.

I don't know if she could have forgiveness if she's never really even dealt with it. I think that's more like denial and avoidance, and pretending it didn't happen.

I know what a toll it takes,it still has its effects on me to this day, although I don't think about the actual events, it changed who I was, the way I looked at the world, etc.

She chose a really good husband that's for sure. I hope you can encourage her to get help.

hopeful

April 6, 2007
11:53 am
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door1
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Thank you so very much.These few days on this site have opened a whole new view on this problem. I am indebted to all of you. I know my wife is in good hands with all of you.In other words your help helps me in this part of our journey.Thank you all so very much I can't discribe into words the help and comfort you have given me. I know there is hope and I will continue to pursue what ever it is I need to do to get her through this. I am so glad I found this site.You women should be proud of your self you are strong people. I can say this because I have been watching my wife go on as best she can under these circumstances and be very strong.She is an amazing woman as are you all.I do value your support whole heartedly. I have been to a counseler and she touched on a few of these topics but not nearly as much as you all have. Thank you. Please keep in touch, and I will also.

April 7, 2007
8:43 am
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nvr2late
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door1...
and hopeful...
I could not have said it better myself!
and until I wrote those words..I did not know how much my mothers reaction bothered me!
YES...I felt like I did something wrong!
and it was swept under the rug!!!

and I needed to learn how to forgive and forget like everyone else seemed to do!
I have 2 kids..one is a 12 year old girl...
if I can imagine my daughter (I was her age when it started) coming to me and telling me that someone was abusing her...
I cannot tell you what I would do...but I CAN tell you it would not be...'why are YOU doing this to ME???'

and you would have to hold me back from that person.
as I do not know what I would do.
she will NOT have her life changed by simple words like that
my mother changed my whole outlook on life from that moment on.

and I at that point realized that I had NO one I could trust.
and have stuggled with that my WHOLE life.
my daughter now has a dad that is an alcoholic...and lies to her...it kills me..but it makes me MAD! and I sure do not cover up for him anymore (we are divorced)....kids KNOW who they can trust!
and I will not make that same mistake and ruin another girl's life...

you are an understanding husband to accept these things that have happened to her without running, not many men can handle information that you have stored.

please PLEASE show her that someone in her life can be trusted...and she can come to you without judgement...
we have grown up thinking it is all our faults and that we did something wrong!!!

our self-esteem has suffered for it...our LIVES have forever been changed.
we NEVER had that security that someone would take care of us..stick up for us.

she is SOOOO lucky to have you!

sorry...I have to go now...the tears are making it hard for me to see!!!!

you do not know how much you have helped ME see...this was NOT my fault!!!
and I hope that I can find someone as understanding as you someday!
nvr

April 7, 2007
9:08 am
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door1
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Thank You for your kind words. And I will take your advice. Please stay strong. My wife is the most beautiful person in the world to me and I do want to make her time with me as beautiful as she makes me feel. You all are beautiful people and it is all good things we want in life. We all strive for the best possible life we can get.That is my goal, and I know it's yours too. Once again Thank You so very much.

April 7, 2007
2:19 pm
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hopeful for change
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I think for myself personally, this was the beginning of my codependency. Being let down by the abuser, and then the rest of the family. It was the opposite of what should have been.

And when we do tell, these people should have jumped in, protected us, loved us, held us and been by our sides, but they weren't.

It wasn't our faults how any of them acted or reacted. They want to stay in denial, they don't want to acknowledge it.

I believe it started my journey, of wanting so badly to be loved, if I tried to prove myself, maybe someday someone would love me, they'd see the good in me. But....I ended up in abusive relationships or ones with addicts..trying to get love from people who weren't able to get it. But not really knowing or acknowledging that this was abuse, that there were really relationships out there where I could be treated better. Love isn't abuse.

Even to this day,I am with an alcoholic who is not loving, compassionate or shows love the way I need it. He's not a bad person, but its not what I feel I want or need. I feel I settle for less than I deserve. But after all I've been through in my life this is highly better than the rest.

Sorry got off on a roll there. But this lady has a husband who does care and does want to talk, and does love her...so that is awesome.

April 7, 2007
6:42 pm
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door1
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I am very sorry hopeful you had such a sad situation. All of this story you tell is so similar to my wifes story.My wife was in some similar bad relationships before me. some were not so bad I was told, but she did'nt feel good enough for them. When I met my wife she had a 9 month old boy I fell in love with them both and just never let go. We got married I adopted her son and started our life.The father of my adopted son was never involved at all in my sons or our life.I guess it was one of those bad situations.I never knew who he was,that may have been a good thing. We had one more son together which is the one who got very sick.We have stuck together through alot of bad weather but her parents have really put the clamps on us really moving on. The stress of all this can really hurt.Thank you for your support again. You have no idea what this means to me.You are all such beautiful people.

April 7, 2007
10:39 pm
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nvr2late
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yes, there seems to be a pattern of abuse and toxic relationships...needing to find love and not really knowing what it is!

door..you give us hope that there is better out there..the journey we all take, she found her way out of the pattern! she is VERY lucky to have you...she is a beautiful person and deserves to have some peace in her life and she has a husband that cares and tries to understand her.

I hope that we can find that someday...a way out of our feelings of inadequacy...
to a point where we feel we DESERVE a good relationship!

and to trust someone!
you are our inspiration!

your wonderful wife and you...
I wish you all the best of luck!

nvr

April 8, 2007
4:06 pm
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door1
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You all deserve the best. We initially are all born into this world free of anger,fear,sadness,etc all the bad stuff.And you cling to the people closest to you who you trust and love. Its when these people who you have trusted to give you security fail and you find your self looking for that secure feeling again but not knowing at all where to start, thats the problem.You really have to start over to find true happiness. You are not born with these emotions they come along down the road of life.Please stay strong. You all deserve the best and to be happy.
Thanks.

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