A guy I know from class approached me today on break. "Can I have your number to give my girlfriend? She needs someone to talk to." This guy had heard my story, which I've just started being open about in the past year. (This is a counseling/therapy group class.)

She called today and we talked for about an hour. I can see why he asked me in particular. So many things in her story were in mine. Molestation, physical violence from parents, biblical/spiritual abuse, abusive men, drug experimentation, suicide attempts, cutting, and eating disorders. The girl is only 17. It was a little bit heartbreaking, and a little bit hopeful for me. I'm glad that being open with my own screwed up childhood I'm able to help someone else. I know I would have loved to have someone to talk to about all I had going on. It's also frustrating, because these things are still going on in so many homes. Her parents literally beat her with the bible - using it as a blunt isntrument to leave bruises on her body as they told her she was going to hell. Like when my brother called HRS, when she called police, they did nothing because her father is a respected minister.

She moved out of the house Monday and is staying with friends. She's also seeing a therapist. But I'm glad for any little comfort or encouragement I can give. On the one hand, I'm so upset that she's been through all this. And on the other, I'm glad my honesty meant her boyfriend was able to match her up with someone who can identify with the feelings of shame and embarrassment that happen in abusive homes.

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Comment by Angie Jackson on May 31, 2009 at 8:30pm
Thanks Gecko. They sound like exactly the kind of group I want to be promoting on my blog. I'd like to set up donation boxes for groups that protect religiously abused kids. My personal fave right now is SilentLambs.org, which pays for legal representation for children going up against "pedophiles paradise" AkA Jehovahs Witnesses.
Comment by Gecko, Seth...brother of Richie! on May 31, 2009 at 7:44pm
http://www.splcenter.org/index.jsp Big in the Civil Rights Movement, literally destroyed the KKK. and did it all in the courts. They track hate groups and such. They may be will to take on religious cults abusing children because the children's rights ARE being violated and the state is refusing to do anything.
Comment by Angie Jackson on May 31, 2009 at 10:07am
SGecko - the who? I've never heard of SPLC. We both live in Florida. Florida HRS did nothing in our case (and my grandma retaliated his report by kicking my then-12 year old brother out of the home) and cops did nothing in her case, just believed her dad that she'd been acting up and "needed discipline". They threatened to lock her in juvie.
Comment by Gecko, Seth...brother of Richie! on May 31, 2009 at 1:13am
Its wonderful what your doing. I am sure it must be painful to relive a lot of those memories. I'm just curios the part about the cops not doing anything. I wonder if any one could comment about getting the SOUTHERN POVERTY LAW CENTER involved.
Comment by Angie Jackson on May 29, 2009 at 9:19am
The biggest thing was just telling her "It's not your fault. You didn't deserve that. It was wrong of them to do it" and reminding her how strong she is for fighting back, running away, and seeking help so many times. I talked to her boyfriend yesterday and he said she was smiling when she got off the phone, and wants to talk to me again.
Comment by Dionysus on May 28, 2009 at 9:28pm
It was very kind of you to lend an ear. Sometimes sharing common experiences can have a great theraputic effect. It seems such a shame that the people you place the most trust in are in the best position to abuse that trust.
Comment by Angie Jackson on May 28, 2009 at 6:08pm
Yeah. My grandma is definitely a sick bitch, and she did a lot of the same things. (Never hit me with the bible though - there were enough other objects around that would suffice.)
Comment by Rick on May 28, 2009 at 4:01pm
All I have to say is..."HOLLY CRAP!"
I'm surprised she's not gotten a gun and killed the bastard....poor kid... But I've seen stuff like this before. As long as they've got a bible in their hand they can get away with pretty much what they want.
And all they got to do is pull a quote out of context out of the bible.
Sounds like the parents have some really deep seeded issues and are in bad need of professional help. Not another preacher but a professional mental health professional.

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