I am a Survivor of Childhood Sexual Abuse and Bullying
Sexual abuse of children and sibling bullying are hidden crimes. Nobody seems to know. Everyone, especially parents, think sibling bullying is just brothers rough housing, but then such bullying, which begins at home, transfers to schools. It spreads like a disease. Most parents never know their child was sexually abused, because children who are sexually abused don’t tell.
An expert says, “People assume that the eldest child is the strongest in the sibling group and so will do the most bullying. In reality, it’s the middle child, competing for his parents’ attention and love, who exhibits the greatest propensity for bullying.” Another expert in childhood bullying says, “Sibling bullying is widespread and occurs all the time. We now know that sibling bullying also spreads to bullying at school. Furthermore, children who are bullied are most likely to suffer behavioral and psychological problems. They feel no place is safe for them.”
Why don’t kids tell? Being an adult survivor of childhood sexual abuse and sibling bullying, I understand why kids don’t tell and why these crimes are not disclosed. Although there are many reasons why children don’t tell anyone they were sexually abused or bullied, the most common reason is FEAR.
The victim of child abuse and bullying is always warned, “Don’t tell or else….” You don’t tell if an abuser or bully threatens you, and those who sexually abuse children often threaten to kill them and even their family if the child tells. A child who does tell is rare and incredibly brave.
Prevention of sibling bullying and childhood sexual abuse needs to start at home. Parents must take responsibility for educating their children on the importance of telling. If it doesn’t start at home, we don’t stand a chance of putting and end to these awful crimes.
I was a victim of both childhood sexual abuse and sibling bullying. I survived but at an awful price. It took me 47 years to come forward, including many years of therapy. Finally, I woke up and said, “Enough!”