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My Mother Is Still Married to My Abuser

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I was molested by my stepdad at age 13. I was sick (stomach bug) and my stepdad asked if I wanted to take a bath. I said yes, but did NOT consent to being undressed and bathed by him. He just did it, and I was terrified. My mother knew that this happened, but not that I was molested. I told my guidance counselor at school about the bath, but also failed to mention what else he had done. CPS came to the house, but nothing came of it.
I finally worked up the strength to tell my mother that I was molested when I was 19, in addition to all the perverted things he has done/said throughout the years. The most disgusting thing I recall him saying happened at age 12, a year prior to being molested. He said &”if you were 18, I would leave your mom for you.” I nervously laughed, trying to disregard what I had just heard.
Despite telling her everything, she is still married to him and has shown little to no concern. I came forward three months ago to every family member of mine and my stepdad’s that I have in my contacts. I have an 11-year-old brother that my mother had with my abuser, and after coming forward to everyone (which she was aware of) she claimed that she wanted to speak with a professional before making any decisions. She’s trying to justify her lack of action with the potential effect that leaving his dad may have on him.
I have not spoken to her since coming forward. When my older brother spoke to her last month, she blatantly lied by saying that I spoke to the professional she supposedly saw. She even said that this ‘professional’ told her that nothing she does will be good enough for anybody, and that I may have some kind of delusional disorder.
I suppose what I’m trying to ask is how I should handle this disaster. I’m absolutely devastated. My mother and my stepfather’s family have completely sided with him. It’s hard to effectively describe how soul-crushing this is to somebody that hasn’t been in a similar position. All I know is that I’m in desperate need of guidance.

My Mother Is Still Married to My Abuser

Answered by on -

A.

You told them the truth. They didn’t want to hear it. They may be in denial. The idea that your mother’s husband, the man she chose to marry, had molested you may be too much for her to handle and thus she’s choosing not to believe it. She may know it’s true, as many partners do, but can’t admit that she made a mistake in her selection of a husband. Unfortunately, there’s likely nothing you can do to change her mind. As difficult as it may be, it might be best to keep your distance from them.

Thankfully, you’re an adult and can live independently. Perhaps eventually, there will be a resolution, but as long as your mother is married to your stepfather, she’ll likely continue to side with him. You’ll have to decide whether or not the two of you can continue to have a relationship despite her not believing you. My hope for you is that you don’t blame yourself. It’s not about you; it’s about the character of those choosing not to believe the truth.

Undoubtedly, this is a difficult problem to endure but endure you must. Counseling will help you to understand the complexities of the family dynamic. Most importantly, it will assist you in moving on with your life. Good luck and please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle

My Mother Is Still Married to My Abuser

Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW is a licensed psychotherapist and Assistant Professor of Social Work and Forensics with extensive experience in the field of mental health. She works in private practice with adults, adolescents and families. Kristina has worked in a large array of settings including community mental health, college counseling and university research centers.

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2018). My Mother Is Still Married to My Abuser. Psych Central. Retrieved on May 26, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2018/11/16/my-mother-is-still-married-to-my-abuser/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 15 Nov 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 15 Nov 2018
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