Am I the only one that has been sexually abused?
Have you ever been alone, truly alone? So alone that you know no one is coming to be with you–ever? Close your eyes and image that. Being that alone is how a victim of sexual abuse feels. They feel abandoned by family, friends, and church because they feel that nothing this bad could happen to anyone else. They can’t speak up because of guilt, shame, fear and the pain they could cause themselves and others. They often feel abandoned by God, thinking that a good and powerful loving God would never allow sexual abuse to occur!
The sad truth is that if you are a victim of sexual abuse you are not the only one and you are not alone. Others have walked this rocky path before and have survived, even thrived.
Just a few numbers to shed some light on this dark secret and how prevalent sexual abuse is:
- Every 109 seconds someone experiences sexual assault in the United States.
- Every 8 minutes that victim is a child.
- The majority of sexual assaults occur at or near the victim’s home.
- A majority of child victims are 12-17. A third of the victims are under age 12.
- One in three adolescents in the U.S. is a victim of physical, sexual, emotional or verbal abuse from a dating partner.
- Approximately 70% of sexual assault cases are never reported to authorities.
It’s hard to determine exactly how much sexual abuse is going on because so much of it is unreported. So you can be sure the numbers above (we mean people) is less than what is actually happening.
Look around. With these statistics someone you know and love is likely to have been or become a victim of sexual abuse—it may even be you.
There are a few things that Voices for Virtue want everyone, especially victims of sexual abuse, to know.
You are not alone. There are a lot of people and resources available to you. You no longer have to feel alone and afraid.
And, this is the most important part. God is real and He loves you. As you or someone you know makes the hardest decision of their life; to come forward and tell their story, confront their abusers and seek healing, God will be there with open arms for you. You are never truly alone because God is always near.
As we openly talk and discuss Sexual Abuse we can come to understand it and more effectively stop it.
Go to voicesforvirtue.org/sexualabuse for more information and resources.