We live in a time where a family would rather not speak about a rapist or pedophile; just so they can try and hold faith in the family's name.
But what about the victims?
Like the children who are forced to eat dinner with the same person raping them every night or, the now-adult woman; who contemplated missing her grandmother's funeral, just to avoid seeing her rapist; who happens to be a close family friend.
Childhood sexual abuse is something very rarely discussed and it is the root cause of much-troubled youth. The impact sexual abuse has on the developing mind is detrimentally destructive. From the moment your boundaries are defiled, innocence and youth are taken and eliminated. Most times you experience the torture of sexual abuse before you even learn about your body.
Let's talk facts about statistics found online at rainn.org,
"One in 9 girls and 1 in 53 boys under the age of 18 experienced sexual abuse or assault at the hands of an adult. Out of the yearly 63,000 sexual abuse cases found strong evidence, by Child Protective Services (CPS) that 80% of perpetrators were a parent 6% were other relatives 5% were "other" (from siblings to strangers) 4% were unmarried partners of a parent"
As cited above, 80% of the perpetrators are people known to the child.
Imagine trying to process why uncle is creeping into your bedroom at night while you're sleeping. While he's inside your bedroom, he starts molesting you. At young age of 8 years old you have no idea that opening in your vagina even existed. The pain, the fear, and the confusion. Something in your soul recognizes this should not be occurring and you should say something to someone. But who will believe you when you tell them, and how are you even going to phrase it? As a young girl, these were the questions I asked myself.
How would I speak about something happening to me at night when I sleep when I have no idea what to say or who to trust?
Growing up in foster care, I didn't want to be the reason my sisters and I were separated again. For a while I even started to believe it was deemed to happen, this was the purpose of little girls and women. When a man needs sex you lie down and let him have his way with you; a dysfunctional thought process stemming from the sexual abuse. Someone you trust to love, nurture and protect you is the person who in reality, annihilates you and takes your life; leaving behind an empty vessel. Where is community awareness and outrage?
As I grew older I started to learn that this wasn't an isolated occurrence to my upbringing solely; it was something many young girls had experienced, including my mother and her mother as well. Apparently, childhood sexual abuse was and still is, rampant in the black community, and many other races, only no one will speak about it. Take six women and 20 men and sit them in a room, ask has anyone experienced childhood sexual abuse, one of two things will happen. At least one will raise their hand admitting to being a survivor or; no one will say anything at all.
Well here's another statistic from victims of crime.org,
1 in 5 girls and 1 in 20 boys is a victim of child sexual abuse;Self-report studies show that 20% of adult females and 5-10% of adult males recall a childhood sexual assault or sexual abuse incident;
During a one year in the U.S., 16% of youth ages 14 to 17 had been sexually victimized;Over the course of their lifetime, 28% of U.S. youth ages 14 to 17 had been sexually victimized;
Children are most vulnerable to CSA between the ages of 7 and 13.
With the stats cited above; at least one of the people in that room of 5 women and 20 men, would have experienced childhood sexual abuse.
Even now in 2020, childhood sexual abuse is ignored and swept under the rug. The only way black people will acknowledge it exists is when R.Kelly is the poster child. That's when you hear the most chatter about this ruinous subject of sexual abuse. My truths being told, I pity R.Kelly more than I do the parents of the women involved in that entire scandal.
We've acknowledged the issue with pedophiles in the community and family, older men have been preying on young girls way before R.Kelly if we must be real. Having conflicted judgmental behaviors I know firsthand how promiscuous a misguided teenage girl can be. At that age, you are living what you see. I have also experienced rape forcibly; the two are not the same. The latter would be the worse of the two evils.
Even with the nationwide case of R.Kelly; the issue is still very much unaddressed and relevant. Robert was also molested as a child and that too was swept under the wrong; years later he started preying on young girls and it was swept under the wrong. It wasn't until a woman decided she needed more cash, more financial gain; that the media starting to cover the issue. The same people already aware of the cultural atrocities decided to Burn him with one hand while playing with gasoline with the other. Pointing fingers and passing blame with no accountability of their own brothers. How so?
Girls aren't the only victims of childhood sexual abuse.
Many young boys were molested at the hands of a caretaker or parent, only in there eyes and beliefs; it's a badge of honor, a rite of passage into manhood. Sounds a bit like Stockholm syndrome if you ask me. I'm no professional but the glorification of someone finding sexual interest in a child, or finding pleasure from sexual activities with that child mentally disturbing.
An underdeveloped child, physically mentally and spiritually should not have to endure such trauma. Unfortunately, before they reach the age of 16 at least 1 out of 6 boys would have experienced unwanted sexual activities from an older child or adult, and sexually abused boys often become men who have difficulty distinguishing among sex, love, nurturance, affection, and abuse.
I sincerely advise you to read more on these statics specifically at Psychology Today. Heart wrenching to say the least.
Before we can address the perpetrators we must acknowledge they were victims too.
It has to be erased from the unspoken cultural trends.
Addressing the issue to fix the problem, That is the only resolution.
If you or someone you know are experiencing abuse, or if you are a survivor, someone is willing to help you get the support you need. Check out the two organizations below:
RAINN Men, Women, Teens, Children
Call 800.656.HOPE (4673)
Something specifically for men who would prefer to chat