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Raped By Father at 12

Published: May 14, 2012
Dear TeenHealthFX,


I was raped when I was 12 by my dad and I became pregnant. I also had sex with him another time but nobody knows about it and I feel guilty because I didn’t really struggle the 2nd time .My mom found out and he was put in jail and I went to live with my aunt but my son stayed with her. I'm 16 and I still think about what happened and I can’t even think of it as rape. Also when I was 8 I had sex with a cousin who was 13.I cant get these things out of my mind and there are times when I can still feel my dad in me. It happens at random times and I can’t concentrate and it’s bad when it happens at school because I feel like killing myself. My grades are bad and I'm always in trouble. Every time something bad happens I feel like cutting or killing myself. And I can get really violent mean with my youngest cousin and I don’t like hitting or shouting at him but sometimes it makes me feel better to see him cry and get scared and I cant control myself sometimes and I'm scared of what could happen. 

Right now I can usually stop myself but sometimes the urge to kill myself is so strong. I actually made a plan and I tried it taking a lot of pills but I didn’t take enough and I just made myself sick and I threw up. I don’t want to kill myself but I feel so bad and depressed like there’s a dark cloud over my head and its the only solution I cant even distract myself and it goes on for weeks I don’t even like doing the things I used to and I've pretty much alienated myself from my peers. I have no one to talk to because the counselors hate me and my aunt and uncle would think I was doing it so I could be lazy. And I just don’t know what to do. And I feel like something is going to happen and I’m going to kill myself. I know that my life is not that good and it’s probably going to get worse and if I was dead my cousin would be safer. What should I do?


Signed: Raped By Father at 12

Dear Raped By Father at 12,


TeenHealthFX is sorry to hear that you had to endure such traumatic experiences with your father and your cousin. Sexual abuse is a painfully difficult thing to deal with and can leave a person feeling enraged, depressed, guilty, ashamed, and more. FX can appreciate the anger you are feeling because of how you were violated in these terrible situations with your father and cousin. We can also understand that you are experiencing feelings of guilt because you didn’t resist with your father the second time. Many people in similar situations end up feeling guilty or responsible when they do not put up any kind of resistance or willingly go along with what is happening to them. There are many different completely understandable reasons as to why people in those situations do not resist (such as feeling worried about their safety or feeling too powerless or hopeless in the situation to try and put up a fight). But whether you resisted or not, either way you are not to blame and you are not responsible for what happened – your father is the one completely responsible for abusing his authority and trust with you in such a terrible way.


Because of the various emotions you are understandably experiencing – anger, guilt, fear – it makes sense that you are having trouble doing well in school, being productive, staying out of trouble, interacting in a healthy way with peers, and feeling calm and loving with your cousin. The question becomes how can you find a way to deal with these feelings before they lead you to do something where you harm yourself or someone else? FX thinks that you need to find an adult whom you can turn to for support as soon as possible – a staff member at your school, a neighbor, extended family, therapist, or any other trusted adult who can be there for you with guidance and support. If your aunt and uncle think you are seeking out therapy because you are “lazy,” then let them think that. FX knows that is not the case, and so do you – so you need to do for you and make a priority to help protect your physical and emotional well-being. Find an adult and explain how you are feeling – show them this question and answer if that helps to get the ball rolling. Make a plan for safety to protect yourself and your cousin from any impulses you may be having. And remind yourself that things can get better for you, that suicide is not the answer, and that you deserve to feel better and happier with your life.


Since you stated that the “counselors hate you,” FX has two suggestions. The first is to go to one of these counselors with this note and let them know that you are feeling scared and unsure of what to do, and even though it might be difficult, you would like to make a commitment to working things out. If you do not want to do that, or try it and feel it is not helpful, FX suggests that you look into another therapist in your area you can go see. You can get referrals from school staff members, your primary care physician, or your healthcare insurance. If you live in northern New Jersey and need help finding a therapist you can also call the Access Center from Atlantic Behavioral Health at 888-247-1400. Outside of this area you can log onto the US Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website for referrals in your area.


If you get to the point that you are seriously considering suicide or are afraid of your impulses with yourself or your cousin, then you need to seek help immediately. You can call 911 or go to your nearest hospital emergency room. In northern New Jersey you can also call the crisis hotline from Morristown Memorial hospital at 973-540-0100. Outside this area call the Suicide & Crisis Hotline, 1-800-999-9999, 24 hours, 7 days a week.


You can also contact the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network (RAIN) at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673), 24 hours, 7days a week for help, referrals, and information.



Signed: TeenHealthFX