The Devil has been working to destroy marriage relationships since Adam and Eve.
One of his most effective strategies of discord is sexual pollution.
There’s a sexual pollutant the Devil has convinced us to keep secret. We are doing it quite well. That is child molestation.
“National surveys of adults suggest that 9-32% of women and 5-10% of men report that they were victims of sexual abuse and/or assault during their childhood,” Universityof New Hampshire Childhood sexual abuse fact sheet.
Innocence is ripped from the victim
no matter what the level of perpetration.
Even if it was just one encounter, do not shrug it off as insignificant. Even a single childhood episode can taint your view of sexual expression as a married adult. This can include withdrawing from being sexual with your husband.
Here is where the Devil goes the ultimate distance in marring a marital union. His most devastating and efficient work begins with an innocent victim. He teaches her to hate her body and her God-given sexual nature through shame, guilt and self-loathing. The brain of a child can’t comprehend that this act wasn’t her fault.
She may think;
“If I had done this different, it wouldn’t have happened.”
“If my body looked different, it wouldn’t have happened.”
“If I’d been less happy, it wouldn’t have happened.”
It was NO FAULT of yours. As a child, you aren’t mature enough to know that it’s only the perpetrator’s fault. It was only the sin of the perpetrator and nothing on your part that caused this.
It makes sense, doesn’t it, that a woman with this experience in her past may have low sexual desire within marriage?
The devil knows he is most likely sabotaging this innocent child’s future marital intimate relationship. Thus, affecting 2 people instead of 1.
No woman should feel shame, guilt and self-loathing regarding her sexuality due the vile act of another! Heinous!! I am livid and in tears for those hurt through the sexual pollution of child molestation.
Here’s the HOPE.
“I will not insult refugees from childhood hells by offering easy answers to the imponderable questions that such experiences raise. I don’t know why our loving Father God permits children to undergo such unspeakable suffering. But, I cling to my belief that somehow in ways light years beyond my capacity to understand God will fulfill His promises to comfort the mourning and bring joy out of the pain. If the pain of our pain is that God allowed it, then the joy of our joy must be learning that God can heal and redeem our pain and lead us into lives of genuine joy,” Sandra Wilson (from the book, Hurt People – Hurt People).
“The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor,
and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
and provide for those who grieve in Zion.
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
instead of ashes,the oil of joy
instead of mourning
and a garment of praise
instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the Lord
for the display of his splendor,”
Ranae Garrunae, an abuse survivor and founder of www.nomorevictim.com, believes all can recover. But, there will be effort on your part.
“You are honoring God by cleansing your temple to restore it to its divine purpose,” Dr. Doug Weiss (in regards to sexual abuse recovery).
Your divine purpose is to be Christ’s ambassador. But, when we are wounded, we may not be functioning at full potential.
You were betrayed when you trusted an adult as a child. Let Christ help you heal from this. He knows what it was like to be betrayed. His life was betrayed by Judas Iscariot. His disciples abandoned him when he was arrested in Gethsemane. Matthew 25:56, “…then all the disciples deserted him and fled.”
Where to go from here? I am NOT a licensed counselor. But, from my own experience with childhood sexual pollution, I have three thoughts.
Don’t Keep It A Secret Any Longer
Childhood abuse victims are trained to be quiet. They are intimidated by the powerful adult perpetrator to not tell anyone. For women, it is very good to talk about their experience.
When you talk about it you are showing you have power over the perpetrator that swore you to secrecy. You can begin to heal.
Be discerning with whom you share. Christian licensed professionals are a good place to start.
Your Husband Still Needs You
You may go into marriage with the past abuse fully disclosed to your spouse. But, you may not realize that it can have a negative impact until years later. Sometimes the response doesn’t appear until after children arrive and memories of your own childhood transport you back to a vulnerable time. The memories bring feelings back to the surface.
Don’t shut your husband out. He can help love you through this. Talk openly with him. What if he has a similar experience? You can call the Great Physician together for healing. You can together make sure that Christ is the center of your home. You husband can be your shoulder and your biggest fan. My personal opinion is that you stay connected through physical intimacy, too.
Once healing has begun, you have to find a way to forgive your perpetrator and yourself. Why yourself? Even though the feelings of shame, guilt and self-loathing aren’t from YOUR action, that doesn’t make the feelings any less real.
The beauty is you don’t have to learn to forgive alone! You have the Holy Spirit and his incomparable power to help you clear and cleanse your heart of the residue of pollution.
Forgiveness doesn’t mean everything is hunky dory and you act like nothing ever happened. It means the perpetrator holds no power over you any more.
Let God bear the burden of vindication. He makes it clear how he will treat those who mistreat children. We see how precious children are to Jesus when he calls a little child to him in Matthew.
“If anyone causes one of these little ones, those who believe in me, to stumble, it would be better for them to have a millstone hung around their neck and be drowned in the depths of the sea,” Matt. 18:6.
Pray for Cleansing and Healing
Pray for clarity of mind to see into the truth of your value to and in Christ.
Pray for the adult wisdom to know you were a helpless child.
Pray for the Holy Spirit to give you the power to cope and overcome.
Pray for your marriage to be protected so that you can focus on healing.
Pray to be directed to the appropriate help, especially to the right counselor.
Pray that the Holy Spirit help your heart become forgiving.
Pray you can fully embrace that past abuse doesn’t define you or your marital sexual success.
When the pain rears its ugly head, keep praying!!!
I write about this not only for awareness within the marital union. I write about this so that those who have not been affected can be sensitive.
Statistics say 1 in 4 of us are abused sexually as children. (1 in 6 males are abused.) I think the statistics may be skewed because it is such a secret sin. Far more people are probably affected than reported.
The anger within an adult survivor of sexual abuse can manifest in various ways.
Just because you don’t understand or even agree with the way a person acts or responds, don’t think you know the full story. Only GOD knows the motives and facts. Knee jerk reactions by us hurt more than help. We need to be gentle with each other, soul sisters. We know not who carries the scar of this childhood trauma.
Two insightful articles at Familylife.com
American Psychological Association Information
Linking with Jolene at The Alabaster Jar: Marital Oneness Monday
Linking with Sheila Gregoire at tolovehonorandvacuum.