It's never too late to begin the healing process from childhood sexual abuse. It's never too early to fall in love with the person God created you to be. Long ago someone made a choice to take away your innocence, but today that someone can't touch your freedom to heal.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Playing in the Deep End: Encouragement for Moms

“I spent the first seven years trying to protect her from every hurt and pain,” she said, “then I realized that this wouldn’t help my daughter become the type of person I wanted her to become . . . a person with compassion. I didn’t want her to be self-righteous and unloving.”

I smiled. This woman has been my friend for years now. I’ve had a front row seat in her life and she in mine. Neither one of us are very good at “small talk” or as we call it—playing in the shallow end, so when we carve out time for our friendship, we jump right into the deep end, both feet, prepared to go under, knowing that at any second one of us will reach out a hand to pull the other up for air. Safety.

She speaks openly with me about the sexual abuse she suffered as a child and how it has impacted her life. On this day she reflected about how she used to parent—looking for danger around every corner, on guard, sword drawn, no rest for her and no rest for her daughter. And if I’d suffered the same abuse as she, I think I’d parent the same way. No judgments here.

But on this day, I heard it in her words; I saw it in her countenance. Freedom. She had uncovered a lie that her sexual abuse created: If my daughter ever hurts then I’ve failed as a mother . . . shame on me.

We both agree that everything should and must be done to protect our kids from sexual abuse. But we also agree that life hurts sometimes, and that people who face hurts and welcome healing are some of the most compassionate, loving people we know.

Perhaps that’s why I feel so safe with her in the deep end.

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  1. Love the analogies the perspective with which it is written...really made me think about myself, my parenting, and my relationships. Thanks!

  2. Thanks Sarah. I'm glad it caused you to think. This my be one of those posts that I'll reread in the future and think that I may need to follow my own advice. Humbling when that happens and also amusing. How easily I forget and how often I need reminders. :)


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