I Was 10 — He Thought It Was OK To Grab My P***y Too (GRAPHIC LANGUAGE)

Trigger WARNING: This chronicles a true case of child sexual abuse. It is descriptive and graphic. NSFW.

I was 10. It was innocent play. A quick and simple brush of my crotch. I didn’t seem to notice. I guess that was all he needed in the way of permission…

When I was a child, my family camped for the last two weeks of August every year and went home on Labor Day. Many families did the same thing. We had a favorite campground and we returned there year after year. We hung out with the same ‘camp friends’ every year.

I don’t remember when he started bringing his family, but I was probably six or seven and I became friends with his daughter. We were the same age. Our parents became friends. It was like a big reunion every year. We would set up our camp site and then us kids would head out into the campground to find our friends. What followed was two weeks of running, playing, swimming, boating, fishing, hunting for snakes, and everything that was great and wonderful about being a kid in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

And then I turned 10.

When I turned 10 he stopped bringing his daughter. She always had other things to do. He was divorced, so his daughter was spending time with her mom. But that was OK. He still wanted to be around the camp kids. He was fun. He played tag, hide and seek, catch, he swam with us, he took us on hikes. He took us on his boat and taught us how to ski. He would drive us across the lake to the little store, where he would buy us bottles of cream soda and candy. Our parents knew him — so he was trusted to care for us like he did his own children.

It started while we were swimming. He would pick all the kids up and toss us through the air to splat in the water. It was great fun. He took great care in picking us up just right, so we were well balanced as we rose up out of the water and he tossed us, screaming, laughing, and squirming.

He touched me. While he was getting ready to pick me up, his fingers ever so gently rubbed me. Right THERE. But it was OK. My mom was on the beach watching. It was probably just an accident. It was on the outside of my swimsuit. He was just trying to get the right grip to send me flying perfectly, so I didn’t belly flop or land on my head. It was OK. He was TRUSTED.

And then it happened again. Ever so gently, but this time with a caress. But it was OK. My mom was watching. He was a teacher. He had three kids of his own. We were just playing. It was OK.

He kept touching me, getting me used to the feel of his hand THERE. My swimsuit was on. It was OK. That summer we left and it was out of my mind. I forgot about it. Because it was OK. My mom was right there watching us from the beach. My older brothers were right there in the water with us.

And then I was 11.

We went back, and he was there. Without his daughter. But it was OK. He was like a favorite uncle. We played, and laughed, and boated, and swam. He continued touching, only this year his hand snaked INSIDE my little swimsuit. and he rubbed me, inside my swimsuit right THERE. When I tried to move his hand, he explained that he needed to place his hand there to make sure he could toss me through the air better. My swimsuit was too slippery and he was worried he might drop me. And it was OK. My mom was right there on the beach watching.

He had a camera. At his campsite. All the kids posed for pictures. We laughed. Click, whir, click, whir, click, whir. So many rolls of film. Not just me, but all the kids. So it was OK. My mom was there too. She laughed and enjoyed the fun. She encouraged the pictures.

And then I was 12.

When I was 12 the touching became a poke. One finger, gently slid inside my tiny vagina. When I objected he explained that he needed the extra grip because I was getting bigger and he didn’t want me to slip as he picked me up to toss me through the air. It was OK. My mom was right there. On. The. Beach. WATCHING. The world has changed a lot since then – 12 year old children are not near as naive as I was in the summer of 1974.

And then I was 13.

This was the year that would change my life forever. Instead of just going camping in August, all the regular families decided to add the 4th of July weekend to our summer. We all met at the same campground. Everyone was there. He was there. My parents were newly divorced. He was freshly married to spouse number two – a woman half his age, just out of college.

He lived on a different lake. A bigger lake. They were going to do fireworks there. He invited everyone from the campground to his house for the fireworks. We would all get in his boat and watch the fireworks in the middle of the lake. It would be grand.

And it was. Until… There, in the darkness, on the boat, with his wife next to him and my mother across the boat, he took my hand and placed it on his crotch. I pulled away. He put it back. He assured me silently by motioning to my mom, five feet away on the opposite side of the boat. It was OK. My mom was right there.

Later that night, as everyone prepared to return to the campground, he asked my mother if I could stay at his house. He would feed me breakfast and bring me back mid-morning. She agreed. After all, his new wife would be there. I would sleep on the pull-out sofa bed in the living room. SHE LEFT ME THERE ALONE!

He went upstairs with his wife while I lay on the sofa bed. I couldn’t sleep. He came back downstairs. He fixed me a drink — Vodka and orange juice. It would help me relax he said. I asked about his wife. He said she had taken a sleeping pill and was fast asleep.

He asked me if I knew what a rubber was. No. So he explained it. Then he showed me how to put it on. And then he mounted me. He took my virginity with his new wife in the upstairs bedroom. He was gentle and kind. He constantly asked if he was hurting me. He explained what an orgasm was. He told me how beautiful sex was. How it was a natural thing for people to do. How he had loved me since I was tiny, but he had to wait until I was a woman. I don’t remember much else. He kept stopping and refilling my drink.

I was 13, and I was drunk and a victim of child sexual abuse. I did not feel like a woman. I was a scared child.

Honestly, I felt nothing. I had had at least three drinks by the time he actually penetrated me and was pretty much a limp rag. When he finished, he brought a warm wash cloth and washed me. He gently reassured me that it was perfectly normal to do what we had done. He made me drink a glass of milk and take two aspirin before he tucked me in and let me sleep.

The next morning he ‘welcomed me to womanhood’ with another glass of milk and two aspirin for the headache. He asked me if I was sore there. He asked me if I enjoyed it. I was silent. He fed me breakfast. His wife joined us. I remained silent. We drove back to the campground. I remained silent. He told my mother I might be coming down with something because I had been silent all morning. I don’t think I said a word to anyone for two weeks or more.

We went home from that camping trip. He continued to molest me on our yearly camping trips until I was 17. I tried to tell my mother once, when I was 14. She told me I must be confused and didn’t know what sex was. She told me HE wouldn’t DO anything like that because HE WAS A TEACHER. He was a TRUSTED family friend.

My mother sent me to therapy. They didn’t believe me either. I was acting out and making up tall tales to excuse my bad behavior and my teenage drinking. I was lashing out at him because I was angry at someone close to me that I couldn’t name, maybe my father. I must be upset about the divorce. It must be something, but it just couldn’t be THAT. She continued forcing me to spend time with him, every summer. If I avoided him, she would have my brothers hunt me down and practically drag me to his campsite. I hated her for a long time for that.

It has been 41 years since that man decided it was OK to grab my pussy. Not a day goes by that it doesn’t haunt me. Not. One. Single. Day. Child sexual abuse happens every day. Share your stories, women. It is time for us to stop hiding what was done to us. It is time for us to stop being ashamed because a man made us feel like nothing more than a piece of meat. Step forward. Point fingers. Our continued silence allows the abuse to continue.

It is NOT OK to grab a woman’s pussy no matter who you are – EVER.


Featured image from Kids Cures Foundation.