Beloved Sister, I hope the letter you are going to read today will not apply to you. I hate knowing that for many it will. But I pray the message it brings will compel you to speak out as well. Our Sisters’ team has and will be praying for your full healing and for God to bring good from all that may have been harmful and evil in your life. Suffering at the hands of abusers will never end unless those who have suffered speak up and say, “NO MORE. This stops with me.”
Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. For it is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret. But everything exposed by the light becomes visible, Ephesians 5:11-13
I was recently compelled, after 30 long years, to write this letter.
To all of the girls who were hurt because I was silent:
When the abuse started in my home, I wanted to believe it was merely a horrific dream—a nightmare. That I would wake up the next day and simply try to forget about it. I remained silent. I hid. I hid the truth. I presented a lie to the world.
For four years, I lived this ordeal in silence—absolute silence. I never spoke a word; I never told a soul. I held my tongue and kept my secret close.
Ultimately, my silence proved selfish.
My abuser began hurting me when I was ten. Although he departed this earth 21 years ago, my failure to speak out allowed him to continue his abuse for 14 more years. It pains me today to consider whom else he hurt because I chose to hide. My silence unknowingly represented a stamp of approval on his future offenses.
Sometimes I envision faces—the faces of girls. These girls are suffering, and I wonder why. What’s holding them in bondage? What’s binding them in their prisons? When I gaze at them, I cannot help but wonder, “Was she abused by him, too?”
Now, at the age of 45, I agonize over the people who may have been hurt by him or another person because I silenced my voice!
Shame is a powerful weapon that will silence even the strongest fighter!
For my silence, I ask your forgiveness from the bottom of my heart. I’m so sorry I lacked the courage to open my mouth. I’m so sorry I did not shout from the rooftops and take action so his hands would be tied and he couldn’t hurt you. I’m so sorry I didn’t sound the horn and stop the madness. I’m so sorry I didn’t use my voice or stand up for what I knew was right. I should have never been silent!
We should never be silent! No more secrets!
Please don’t repeat my mistake. If you have been hurt, speak up! Use your God-given voice.
If you are or have been abused, please don’t wait any longer. Tell someone and seek help.
Whether this message applies to you or not, help empower other sisters in Christ to end their silence by simply sharing this post. We all know this is a needed message for so many who have suffered in silence.
No more secrets.