Q. When i was 6 and my father was given custody of me and my brother, every night my father would come into my bedroom and molest me. He never had sex with me, but did other things to me. After he remarried, the problem still persisted. Only recently on my 14th birthday did he stop. I get fits of rage often now, without a predisposition, and I often get into a state of depression and insomnia remembering it. Only one other person knows, and I still haven’t gotten any type of closure of help about it. I also worry that my boyfriend or husband will find out and see me unfit. There’s even times when i feel as if the same will happen to my little sister when she is older. I just want to know how to deal with my depression.

A. You should absolutely seek professional help for this issue. Not only should you seek professional help but you should consider telling the authorities about the abuse that you have endured. I know that it may not be easy to report your father but as you said, you sister may be in danger of having this happen to her. If you cannot easily access professional mental health assistance, you do one of two things: go to a trusted relative and them about the abuse or at least about your current symptoms of depression and insomnia, or go to the school guidance counselor. School is back in session for most students across the country so you should have access to the school guidance counselor.

Please do not feel that you have to keep this secret hidden. You are a victim of abuse. You father did this to you, this is his crime. Reporting him would be the correct thing to do.

Lastly, you also should not try to deal with your depression and insomnia on your own. Please go immediately to a trusted relative or the school counselor. Tell them what has happened to you and what you fear might happen (or what may be happening) to your younger sister. Please seek help immediately.

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 25 Aug 2008

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2008). How Should I Deal with Depression Caused by Sexual Abuse?. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 22, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2008/08/25/how-should-i-deal-with-depression-caused-by-sexual-abuse/