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Brothers Showed Sexual Interest in Me

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From Kuwait: When I was about 12, my older brother would want to hang out and watch movies and stuff, while we were watching he would pull his penis out. He wouldn’t really do anything or try to touch me, it was just there and he just took it out. I don’t know why he did it, and he did it several times.

When I look back at myself, I don’t understand why I didn’t yell at him or tell him to stop. I remember that I didn’t even feel anything, I just stayed silent. I acted like nothing ever happened. I told my mom and she yelled at him for it. It’s never been the same between us, things are always awkward. He never did it again, and he actually moved away for college now. It’s been 4 years, I’m 16 now. Even though it happened a long time ago I can’t help but think about it every now and then, I don’t know how to feel honestly.

Last week, my other brother who just came back from studying in London was watching this show with me. We’ve always been close, we were cuddling in bed as usual. The he randomly started touching my boobs over my shirt. At first I thought it was nothing, but he kept going and got more aggressive with how he was doing it. Just like last time, I didn’t say anything and I didn’t know how to react.

Should I tell my mom about this time, too? Why does this keep happening to me? What am I doing wrong? I feel dirty in a way and I feel like there’s something wrong with me because I never react or tell them to stop. I feel ashamed of myself in a way, but I can’t really explain it. I’m just so confused about everything and I don’t know why this is happening to me and I don’t know what to do anymore.

Brothers Showed Sexual Interest in Me

Answered by on -


There is nothing wrong with you. There is something very wrong with your brothers. I don’t know where they got the idea that it is okay to molest their little sister. I have to wonder what they have experienced that would lead them to do such a terrible thing.

The reason you didn’t say anything in either situation is called the “normalcy bias”. When a person is victimized or witnesses a disaster or crime, the brain may refuse to let it in. The brain protects the person by trying to make the situation feel “normal” even though it’s not. It takes a while for the person to process what is happening and to realize that something is very, very wrong. It’s a common response to a shocking or traumatic event. It’s actually a way that people can cope with something that is emotionally overwhelming.

You didn’t tell your brothers to stop because their behavior was so shocking and outside your normal expectations of how they should treat you that you couldn’t process it. You have nothing to be ashamed of. You can’t expect yourself to be prepared for something that is so unexpected and so wrong.

Yes. You should tell your mother. You need her protection. You might also benefit from talking this out with a therapist in order to feel better. Your mother also needs to take steps to find out what is at the root of the problem. Your brothers are both troubled and troubling boys to be doing this kind of thing to you. They need help before they go too far with someone and commit an even more heinous crime.

I’m very, very sorry you have carried any guilt for this. Really. It’s not your fault. Please do talk to your mom and think about talking with a therapist to help you get past this.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

Brothers Showed Sexual Interest in Me

Therapists live, online right now, from BetterHelp:

Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Dr. Marie is licensed as both a psychologist and marriage and family counselor. She specializes in couples and family therapy and parent education. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2018). Brothers Showed Sexual Interest in Me. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 1, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 26 Nov 2014)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.