How I Overcame the depression of been sexually molested twice at a tender age.
Coming out and sharing my story is making myself really vulnerable, but writing my story down has been one of the ways I healed. I hope someone learn a few things from this.
Growing up, I lived with my grandmother in Abeokuta until she passed away. My mum being an only child, my grandma pampered me a lot. I felt loved living with her and she was my everything. I was so hyperactive, bubbling , intelligent and very happy. Everyone liked me, so I thought.
The first sexual molestation started when I was 7years old. I can remember how the bed looked like, though I can’t remember his face.
He was a family friend, let’s call him Tobi. Tobi was a trusted family friend, he usually came around to play in my house. My grandma liked him a lot. He lives five blocks away from my house.
He came around like every other day and took me to his house, I guessed that was not the first time I had been going to his house. When we got to the house, I was still my usual hyper active self. But I noticed we were alone.
While I was still playing, he pushed me on the bed. I thought he was playing and I was laughing.
Immediately he laid on me, I knew it was not right and I started crying, I want to go home but he wouldn’t listen. I started screaming, he covered my mouth with his hand and used his other hand to grapple me all over my body. I didn’t understand what he was doing, but I knew it’s bad.
After he finished, he warned me not to tell anybody and took me home. When I got home, I was still crying and my grandma asked me what happened. I told her what he did to me and she was really angry, I have never seen her that angry and I taught I did something wrong until she hugged me and said everything will be alright.
I did not know what happened to him but since that day, I stopped seeing him in my house or anywhere around the neighborhood. But I knew my grandmother’s love and I didn’t really think much about that day except the few nightmares I usually had. Till today I don’t know what happened to him and I didn’t ask.
Few years later my grandma died and that was the very first time in my life I felt so sad, rejected and all sorts of pains I have never felt before, not knowing more pains are coming. No matter what I went through after her death, that was one of the hardest things I have ever had to deal with in my life.
The whole world was still merry and my whole world was shattered. I was like how can someone like this die and the whole world is still moving. Apart from my mum she’s the only person I knew that loved me without any doubt and for no reason. I was 9years old when my grandma died.
At age 11, (2005) my dad died and I had to move down to Lagos from Abeokuta. I wished above all things my daddy was alive and in my imaginations I thought about us living together happily ever after.
Moving down to Lagos, I was so excited and looking forward to my new life, even though I don’t have a daddy anymore. I was used to people leaving, it wasn’t much of a pain. I had my whole new life planned in my head.
My family in Lagos is a big one, we have lots of family members living with us. I started school, made new friends both in school and church. Life was good. Going to church and learning about Christ love for me was great because I have never been to church before, living with my grandma who is a staunch Muslim.
Few months after settling down in Lagos, the sexual molestation started. I have never been taught sexual education, but I knew its something very wrong like the first one. My house is a 2 bedroom, we have girls and boys room with a big sitting room. That particular night, we did not have light and there was heat, some of us moved to the sitting room. Two people slept on the 2 sofa and the rest of us slept on the mat. I slept on the mat with a male relative and two other people.
While we were sleeping, he started touching me all over my body,and I taught I was dreaming. I woke up and saw some white transparent slippery substance on me (I later found out it’s sperm). As at then, I didn’t understand what it meant. I was 12years old and no one has ever taught me about sexual education. I stood up and went to the bathroom to clean up my body really confused, I couldn’t talk to anybody. I’m always being bullied about my pronunciation, and everything I do generally. These are people I didn’t grow up with. I felt really alone.
After that night, I stopped been anywhere near him, the family is really big which should have been easy to avoid him but he always found a way to come near me.
Everyday after school, I usually take a nap for an hour. I was alone in the house a month after the first abuse. I thought I was alone, he came into the room and laid beside me touching me again, immediately I woke up. He told me “if you tell anybody, I’m going to kill you”. Since then, each time he finds me alone, he will do unimaginable things to me.
I became withdrawn, stopped talking at home and I slept a lot. Oh how much solitude I found in sleeping. I wished I could sleep and not wake up again.
For months the abuse went on and I couldn’t tell anybody. I thought I was a bad person, how could my grandma and daddy die and I have to be going through this. I became so intimidated, ugly to myself, rotten and damaged. I thought I did something really bad because my teacher once told me “bad things happen to bad people”. I usually felt guilty so guilty even for things I didn’t do.
I’m someone that plays a lot while growing up, takes lot of risks, stubborn and hyperactive. None of them noticed because I didn’t grow up with them. They taught I was quiet. I had lots of battles going on inside of me. Each day, I dread going back home from school and they usually punish me for coming late home when others are already home. I love going to church, not because I knew I could talk to God, I just know Him and I taught He has forsaken me. I heard lots of preaching but I wasn’t listening. I just needed to be far away from home and all the battles going on inside of me.
I hated myself and everybody around me. I just want to be faraway from all these pains and it felt as if I was asking for too much. I was ashamed of myself and my body. Thinking back to what happened, I think one of the reasons I didn’t talk was because I was ashamed.
Then he got admission into university and went far away. I was so happy because I knew finally I’m free. I started secondary school and was coming out of my shell . Each time I wanted to start thinking about it, i slept. While he was away, a distant cousin came to join us, she is one of those people you don’t have a choice but to warm up to.
A year after he went to school, he came back home during Nigeria last census (2006). He was looking so happy and living without no care in the world. The hatred I had for him started again, seeing him made me so angry with murderous thought inside of me.
Two nights after he came back, I was alone again inside my room, my cousin went for evening service. He came into my room, thinking i was sleeping and was about to touch me. I sprang up from the bed and started shouting. He got scared and left the room. When my cousin came back from church, I told her what he was about to do to me. I couldn’t bring myself to tell her what he has been doing to me. She was really angry, confronted him and told the whole family.
He stopped coming near me since then. His mum called the next day and was apologizing saying “he’s family “. I didn’t know what to do, I just hated all of them more. I never let anyone close to me. My best friends became novels and sleep. If I’m not in school, I’m either reading or sleeping.
I read novels to be in other people fantasy. I don’t read school books, I only do school books a day to exam, thank God for photographic memory.
I read harlequin romance and other erotic novels.
I almost lost my childhood. Reading novels helped me both in a positive and negative way. You will be surprised with how many friends you can make with a novel in your hand. Reading those novels became a passion, I have to exchange with people and that made me to start making friends with people who also like reading novels. Gradually, I came out of my shell, I made friends but I didn’t let them come close to know the kind of battles I fought within.
The abuse was over but I wasn’t free. I have all these emotions and hatred bottled inside of me that needs to be out. I really want to be free but I was going about it in a wrong way reading novels that exposed my mind to lots of things.
If you have read some of Harlequin romance novels before, you will know how erotic they are. I started masturbating and breaking rules. I became really stubborn. I just wanted to be noticed. And I was noticed with plenty scars to show for it. Everyone always have something to say about me. I gave them all tough times, that’s the only way I know I can be heard.
After secondary school [ 6years after been sexually molested], I still didn’t talk to anybody about it. I changed church and met Mr Sola Shadeko the author of, “You are a gift”.
Mr Sola became an elder brother and someone I look up to. He gave me his book for free. That was my first motivational book. I never knew books like that exist. The only book I know was novels and school books. I can’t remember most of the contents of the book but reading that book opened my eyes to lots of things and I know I have to talk to someone.
I called him and told him I was sexually molested as a kid twice, I didn’t go into details but that was the first time in 6years I opened my mouth to anyone about my ordeal. Talking to Mr Sola was one of the things that helped me. He told me to always write down my thoughts especially when I can’t talk to anybody. He also said God listens, talk to Him. That was when I started writing, I got a notebook and wrote my thoughts on the notebook.
I know God listens but I can’t talk to Him, I felt rotten and forsaken, how can someone like me stand before Him. I had an inner battle oh it was great but finally I prayed but I know my mind wasn’t fully on the things I was saying. I was still angry about a lot of things, I was even still harboring hatred inside of me. I still do not see myself as someone special.
The battle was on and off in my mind for some time until I finally let go of everything, I cried my eyes out. I know I have to forgive him not because he deserves it, but because I deserve to be happy. I didn’t ask for any of the things I went through. I am just a little girl who wants to be happy with a normal childhood. I refused to let my ordeal define who I am. I refused to be intimidated.
It took a long while but I finally realized I’m special, beautiful, strong, intelligent, fun, adventurous and so many other great things. I’m a house set on a hill that cannot be hidden. My light is meant to shine all over the surface of the earth. I’m totally free. God never gave up on me. God is just starting with me.
If you meet me today and you never heard my story, you wouldn’t believe I went through all this because i don’t live in my past, I live in my bright future.
I still read novels but I stay away from the erotic ones, I do more of Stephen Kings and any other action and adventure novel. Sleeping as an addiction is hard to get rid of but I try to be busy at all times.
God never gave up on me that’s all that matters. I’m not there yet but I’m stronger and I talk to God because I know he’s ready to hear all my troubles at all times.
Lessons from my story; to anyone going through this or has been through this.
* Talk: Do not be afraid of your abuser. Always talk. Talking changes a whole lot of things. It makes people know who he is truly is. Talk so that there wouldn’t be another victim.
* Don’t be ashamed: whatever he did to you, do not be ashamed to talk.
* It’s not your fault: it is never your fault. No matter what you went through, it’s never your fault.
* You are not alone: this was one of the mistakes I made, I thought I was alone. I let hatred blind me and I couldn’t see the wonderful people around me that I can talk to. There’s always someone to talk to. If you can’t talk to human, talk to your maker. God watch over us at all times.
* Forgive to be happy: this will be the hardest thing to do, I know because I have been there. Forgive not because he deserves it, but because you deserve to be happy. Forgiveness totally sets you free.