My dear friend was sexually molested by her father …

April 21, 2010 by  
Filed under Patrick's Blog

I want her to read this powerful meditation — I am not really sure what else to call it — written by the very popular blogger Elizabeth Scalia, a brilliant writer known to First Things readers as “The Anchoress.” She wrote this piece three and a half years ago, and somehow I never noticed it, until today, until just now.


If you suffered sexual abuse at the hands of your father or mother, please read this. If you know someone who else who suffered it, please encourage them to read this. And everyone else, read it. Read it and weep.
. . . There is a strange displacement that occurs within a child who has endured sexual abuse by a parent. There is the dissociative element, of course. A child overwhelmed by what is happening to him or her tends to find a safe spot somewhere inside herself, from which she can almost “watch” the abuse, as though it is happening to someone else.

And there are recurring images that become meaningful to such a child in ways that others would never consider. When I think back on that time in my life, I see images of doorways. The doorway through which I would interiorly pray someone – anyone – would enter, to stop the terrible chaos surrounding me…the doorway I watched while cringing beneath my sheets and blankets, hoping no shadows would be moving within the dim light and heading my way.

The corner moulding of a doorway means little to most people. To me, it holds out hope of rescue, or fear of ruin. . . . (continue reading)


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3 Responses to “My dear friend was sexually molested by her father …”
  1. son of Adam says:

    As Angela Merkel said, after the revelations in Germany came to light in the press, that this is not a "Catholic" problem, but an all inclusive problem. The positive that I see from all of the exposure the Church has been inundated with, is that we have a much safer environment for our children to flourish in. I have come to see that the reason this has been so prevalent in society is because we are so self centered that we don't see what is happening right in front of our noses. I grew up next door to a girl who was molested by a step father and I went to a boarding school where freinds of mine were being molested, yet, even though I saw the signs, and in part on being immature and naive, I ignored them because it was not my problem. Most people won't admit that, but it is true. It is something for us all to contemplate.

  2. Matt says:

    As a father of 6 children (4 sons & 2 daughters) I feel sick about what happened to Elizabeth. The poor little girl. It makes me want to cry.
    I sometimes feel that since time is abstract – that I could pray and try to help people in instances during the past. Poor little Elizabeth – just be aware that there are people out in the world who have a broken heart because of what you had to endure as an innocent and frightened little girl.
    may God bless you.

  3. Lauretta says:

    How tragic that anyone should have to endure something as horrific as this, yet it happens all the time. I pray that the revelations of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church to the public that has begun will be only the beginning of exposing this sickness which is so pervasive in our country. It needs to stop!

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