my girlfriends dad raped her

By Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Q: my girlfriends dad raped her for 3 years, he stopped, she still won’t say anything. Her real dad died, so her mom remarried, and it was when she was young so she kinda treats him as her real dad. When she was 12 he raped her for the first time and she told, but he threatend her so much that she took it back. She told a couple of other times but got either threatend, raped more, or sometimes even abused till she stopped. the mother thinks that she just hates her dad and is making up the raping hoping to get rid of him, he does it when the mother isn’t home. about 1-2 months ago he finally stopped, she is 15, he did it 3-4 times a week for 3 years. me and her have been together for 3 months, i was told about this by her about a month ago, almost right after it stopped. She said don’t tell, i didn’t, but thought about it and about a week ago told her that i was going to telll if she wanted me to or not, but she said htat he stopped, so don’t. I think i am going to tell anyway because just because he stopped doesn’t mean that he shouldn’e be punished.

A: Please be careful. I know you want to do the right thing. Your girlfriend does need some help and her stepdad should be punished. But you need to make sure that you tell the right person in the right way so that your girlfriend gets some protection. You already know that her mother didn’t back her up and her stepdad threatened and raped her again when she tried to say anything in the past. That is likely to happen again unless you find out how to keep her safe.
You need the help of a caring adult. Think carefully about who you can tell who will believe you and who will know what to do. Maybe your school has a guidance counselor or health teacher you know you can trust. Or maybe the parents of a friend are the kind of folks who would get involved.
Another possible source of help is your local Child Protective Services (CPS) agency. It is their job to take care of children and teens who are being abused. Call and tell them what is going on and ask what they can do to help. If you can’t find the phone number, call Childhelp® USA National Child Abuse Hotline 1-800-4-A-CHILD® (1-800-422-4453). Childhelp® USA is a non-profit agency which can provide reporting numbers, and has Hotline counselors who can provide referrals.
No kid should ever have to deal with sexual abuse. I’m very glad your girlfriend has found a guy like you who is willing to stand up for her.
I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

Photo

 

 

Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 19 Jan 2007

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2007). my girlfriends dad raped her. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 21, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2007/01/19/my-girlfriends-dad-raped-her/