Dear Pearls,

The article about the boy who was molested (Tommy’s Story) brought back many of my own memories. My molester was my dad.

Fear is a terrible thing. Every time my dad abused me, he would make me look him in the eye and he would tell me that if I ever told, he would kill me. I believed him. I lived in daily fear. I started messing my pants when I was six. I remember my mom asking me why I did it and spanking me. I told her I didn’t know why and I didn’t. I learned years later that children often do that as a way of letting someone know that something is terribly wrong in their lives.

Bad dreams and terrifying flashbacks after I married finally forced me to seek counsel. It changed my life. For the first time I heard that it was not my fault and that I was not dirty, that God could and did love me and I could be white as snow. I gave my life to Christ, and he healed me of all the brokenness and dirty feelings I had.

The Bible says with all our wisdom, get understanding. I wanted to know why my dad did this to me. Years later, I went back to ask him why. My huge, 6’6”, 375-pound, 65-year-old dad wept like a baby as he told me about being molested by his older brothers. Molesters often beget molesters.

I have met four men who are molesters, and each one of these men was molested by the youth leader at their church or some trusted family member.

The effects of sexual abuse last the rest of our lives, but through Christ we can come to a place of forgiveness and lead normal lives. I have found healing helping others who have suffered my fate.

Thank you for publishing that story. I see MOST parents letting their children go with anyone, just because they are nice or in a “good” position. I wish parents would not take the easy way out and realize that God placed us as guards over our children to protect them. Keep sounding the warning! In today’s world the threat is so much greater for all children. Your Yell and Tell books are great, but in the end parents MUST take their God-given responsibility seriously as well as watch for any possible fear, anger, or change in the child’s behavior that could be an alarm.

— Sandra