It’s OK to Tell

Years of the Secret had burdened me down

In my heart, I longed to be found.

Will someone listen, please just hear!

I just want to be loved and held near!

Unconditional love, not pain and strife…

I need to be free from this abused life

A Grandpa, a teacher, a close friend,

Broken trust forever, just because they were men.

Used and abused they stole what was mine,

In this little girl’s eyes, they took away the shine.

They stole her innocence, made fear live inside,

Wanting to be invisible, fear wanted me to hide.

“It’s our secret, don’t ever tell,”

Are the words that made life a living hell.

Putting hands and things where they don’t belong,

In a poor defenseless child, it was so wrong.

The guilt, the shame and all that pain

Suffering through life, carrying the blame.

Then I met Jesus, He set me free,

The one who loves me unconditionally.

He himself was beaten, bled and died,

All for me so I could heal inside.

It wasn’t my fault and not my choice,

But with Jesus, I have gotten back my voice.

I can forgive those who used and abused me

I can move forward in life as whole and complete.

See it’s ok to tell, the secret is out…

I’m no longer a prisoner of all that doubt.

I am a worthwhile person, Jesus died for me.

I am his workmanship, his specialty.

I am a child of the King who cried and held me tight,

As the abusers tried to control my plight.

They didn’t know the power of Jesus blood,

It has set me free and rushed in like a flood.

He covered me, he healed my pain,

So I could share and you could gain.

So I bind all that fear and pain in Jesus Name!

It’s ok to tell and get rid of the shame.

By Lilly B.

2/2019

I am not sure why I agreed to volunteer to write this blog. I just knew I had to. I attended an A.C.T. United, (Anti Child Trafficking) conference recently and wrote “It’s OK To Tell” shortly after. I am retired and this conference was the first time anyone told me it was OK to tell. The process to volunteer to write this blog has been slow. I have thought about it and prayed about it. When I was young, after many years of abuse, I got the courage to tell at the age of 11. My parents were the ones I told. My Dad immediately flew in a rage and declared I was lying about his Dad, my grandfather, and I was never to talk of it again. I found out many years later that my Mom knew I was telling the truth. My grandfather had also tried to abuse her, his own son’s wife. She was young and had five small children, she would tell me many years later. She was afraid if she had stood up for me that my Dad would have kicked her along with us kids out of the house. She was probably right.

The biggest doubt I had about writing this blog was that I wasn’t trafficked. Or was I? I wasn’t kidnapped and I wasn’t forced to be abused by predator after predator. It was my very own family that allowed the abuse.

My grandmother caught my grandfather in the act of molesting me. With a tear in her eye, she turned and walked away. When my grandpa was done, he yelled at her to come and clean up my mess.

I have found out through the years that he molested many of my cousins and even his own daughters. One of my cousins, who spent much time at my grandparents’ house, told me that my grandmother would place her in bed with our grandpa and close the bedroom doors. Many times I felt like I was being sacrificed to my grandpa so that my mom and my grandma wouldn’t have to be abused.

Many years later and after much counseling, I was able to face my grandpa and tell him I forgave him. I knew if I wanted God to forgive me, I had to forgive him. Tears streamed down his face as I spoke to him. He had, by that time; contracted Alzheimer’s and had been totally unresponsive for months. That day he responded to me and I had the privilege to pray with him to accept Jesus. I also confronted my Dad for not believing me. My heart went out to him as he admitted that he knew I hadn’t lied. I believe he saw his own sister’s abuse growing up and couldn’t admit to the fact that his daughter had also been abused. If he had believed me when I told, he would have had to admit about all the horrors he saw when he was growing up.

There were other abusers. A fifth grade teacher and a friend that I had trusted both added to the shame and guilt I carried for many years. The Bible tells me that “He who the Son has set free is free indeed,” I knew that my abuse had placed me in a prison door, but when I accepted Jesus the cell door was open. It has taken me years to have the courage to walk out of that cell.

I would like to invite you to journey with me as I take one step at a time out of my cell, (the walls I built to protect myself from being hurt again) and learn that my abusers finally have no control over how I live my life.

I hope to share many resources with you about sex trafficking as well as family abuse. I wish that at the age of 11, I would have had someone to tell me that if my parents didn’t believe me to keep telling until someone listened. It would have saved me from many challenges over my lifetime. Today is a new day. Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow may never happen. I am choosing to take that first step out of my cell. It is OK to tell, and keep telling until someone finally listens.

Lilly B.

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