Dear Donald

Content Warning; This open letter to my abuser contains descriptions of molestation, rape, mental and emotional trauma.

It was twenty-six years ago that you first forced yourself inside of me. I was only five years old. You were in high-school. You continued this assault on my innocence for five years. In the woods, behind the tree in your yard, in my driveway, in your room. I was young—too young—to have this thrust upon me, this sexual behavior, this disgusting act, this mental torture—it shut me down. Fourteen years I hid, hid it away in the back of my mind. The first time you raped me you destroyed something in me, you destroyed the trust-bond my body had with my mind. You made me feel like I wanted it. As if I had initiated it, asked for it.

I kept your secret. I kept it from my mom, my dad, my lovers, my wife. everyone.

Until I was twenty-four and had a son. My mind snapped. I was broken, and I was discovering it fourteen years after the fact.

I began to have severe panic attacks, anxiety and obsessive compulsive disorder. I revealed my fourteen-year-old secret to my wife, she was shocked, saddened and angry. She stayed. She supported me, she endured my grief and my panic, but she stayed. I told my mom, she too was shocked and saddened, but she dropped it and has a hard time thinking about it or discussing it, I think she may blame herself a little bit, not that she’d admit it, too proud. I told my father—that was the hardest. He didn’t demean or blame me, he didn’t call me a faggot or make me feel bad for keeping the secret. But, like my mom he stored the information away, he doesn’t speak of it, he doesn’t want to hear it. I’ve since told others, I’m open about it.

I was molested by my teenage neighbor for five years. It changed me, my life and my body.

For years I let my body and mind distrust one another, I allowed my mind to abuse my body through food and laziness and mental disorders. I’ve had torrid sexual relationships because of my disrespect for my body. I’m addicted to sex because that switch was turned on too early for me. I’m generally a pretty screwed up guy.

Well, I was. For twenty-one years I let my mind and body fight one-another, I let you get the best of me. I gave away twenty-one years of my life.

Recently, I’ve reclaimed my body. I’ve regained control. I own me, I own my body, I control my mind. I’m turning my life around. I have a third child on the way and Amy, my wife is still here ten years later.

I’m writing this to you, not because I want you to feel bad for what you did and have probably continued to do to others since, even though you should. But, to say something I need to say to complete my move forward, away from that chapter of my life. Something that needs to be said. Something I truly feel, and shouldn’t.

Donald, I forgive you and may peace find you.