I am a man with a painful past. It all happened thirty years ago, but I remember it as if it had been yesterday…. Even though I am very ashamed to talk about it, I need a word of counsel. A man much older than I sexually abused me, and I remember every detail, his face, his voice, everything. What’s more, I’ve seen the man recently and have had the urge to get even for what he did to me.

I’ve never told anyone, because I think that they would make fun of me. I have a happy life and a daughter, but I’ve never been able to forget something so painful that occurred to me as a child.

Dear Friend,

Thank you for sharing your secret with us. We can certainly understand why you have the urge to get revenge on the evil man who abused you. He hurt you physically and emotionally, and you want him to know what it feels like to be in pain for so long.

Do you have any idea how many other children the man may have abused? Do you know if he currently has access to any children? Most pedophiles engage in serial abuse with one child after another, so there have probably been many other victims in addition to you.

If you have any suspicion that the man may still be abusing children, then it would not be vengeance if you were to expose what he did to you. Rather, it would be showing compassion for those other children and preventing further pain.

However, since you’ve never told anyone before about what the man did to you, you’re not likely to want to tell now either, especially since you say that you’re afraid that people would make fun of you. You obviously do not accept the fact that you are the victim and that this man is a criminal. Please read Cases 11 and 330 to find out what we said to other men who were also victims of childhood sexual abuse.

If you could prevent the future abuse of another child, wouldn’t it be worth it to reveal your secret? The appropriate law enforcement agency would only be able to file criminal charges if your local Statute of Limitations on Child Abuse has not run out. However, if you were to reveal to the man’s family and friends about how he abused you, they would take steps to protect any children whom he comes in contact with even though they might say that they don’t believe he is guilty.

The reason that pedophiles continue to prey on their victims is because people like you are silent. That criminal caused you to feel shame for something that was never your fault. Even though it would be life altering now to reveal what happened to you so long ago, by doing so you would be identifying and accepting as fact that he is the guilty one and therefore the one who should be ashamed. Seek God, and ask Him to give you the courage you need to protect children who are at risk.

We wish you the best,