A few years ago I organized a support group for women who had been sexually abused. Over the span of two months, I lost count of the number of women who cleared their throats, choked off tears, and said, “What I’m about to tell you, I’ve never told anyone.” The pain these women carried I could actually feel in my body, the whole crushing weight of it. Their despair was insufferable. Many said they didn’t believe in God because of what he had allowed to happen, and honestly, I couldn’t blame them. I don’t know that I could have believed in God either if what they shared had happened to me.
What seemed to hurt these women more than their memories was the despair and utter despondency they felt. It lurked like a stalker in the shadows of their daily routines, following them wherever they went, never leaving their side. When they went to the grocery store, it was there. When they ate dinner, it was there. When they tucked their kids in at night, it waited in the hallway. It was all they had ever known. Like so many who have been devastated by tragedy or loss, these women had forgotten what life was like before darkness kicked the door down and moved in. Despair had become their new normal.
If you or someone you know has suffered this tragedy, there’s a book out that can help you. It’s called: The Wounded Heart: Hope for Adult Victims of Childhood Sexual Abuse. I highly recommend it.
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