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Stalking the Bogeyman

Coming to grips with the killer inside me.

I asked if his attack on me was spontaneous or planned. "It wasn't planned," he said. "I just acted on this one weird impulse. As soon as it was over, I was thinking, 'Oh, my God, that's my little sister's friend. How could I have just done that?'"

He said he'd wanted to apologize to me for many years but hadn't sought me out because he didn't want to "reopen old wounds" and because he hoped I had forgotten it ever happened.

"My biggest fear was that I'd ruined your life," he said. "I was afraid that you would turn out to be a homeless drug addict or something and it would all be my fault."

I told him that while I wasn't a street junkie, I did have a tremendous fear of becoming a father, because I didn't believe I'd be able to protect my child from people like him.

Becoming a father had changed his life, he told me. "I've found what love really means," he said. "I used to think that love meant you just really like somebody a whole lot, but when you become a father, you really understand what love is."

I asked him what he would do if he found out that someone had raped his son.

He said, "I'd probably rip their head off."

There's a scene in The Good, the Bad, and the Uglywhere the gunfighter played by Eli Wallach righteously blows away a guy and then drops this pearl of murderous wisdom: "If you're going to shoot, shoot. Don't talk."

Because if you let them talk, they may beg, and if they beg, you may not shoot. When I was still planning to kill the man I was now sitting beside on the 16th Street Mall, my plan was to walk up, say, "David Holthouse. You raped me when I was seven," and then pop, one slug to the crotch, let him writhe, kick him over, hold him down with my foot and then pop, pop, pop, three to the back of the head, lights out.

I knew that if I gave him time to talk, I might not pull the trigger -- and sure enough, as soon as I exchanged a few sentences with him, I didn't want to shoot him at all, because I saw him as a frightened, damaged man. He wasn't the Bogeyman anymore. He was real. He begged my forgiveness. He swore I was the only one.

All the experts say he was almost certainly lying. But then, all the experts say it was extremely unusual for him to admit his crime to me, let alone his wife and parents, and he did at least make the admission to his parents. I checked.

I did not grow up in a religious household. But he did. I have been to church three times in my life, and the first was with him and his mom, an evening mass just before Christmas, shortly after he raped me. I remember kneeling beside him in front of red-cushioned pews, feeling afraid. I don't remember the sermon, but talking to him on the mall, I thought of this passage from Romans: "Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written 'It is mine to avenge. I will repay.'"

When I had nothing else to say to the man who'd raped me when I was seven, we parted ways. He blended into the crowd.

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44 comments
randomguy001
randomguy001

Nice story but weak ending, I would have popped him in each of his hands and legs and the crotch and then just kick him to death, but maybe i'm just a bad person

Claire
Claire

Thank you for sharing your story.

Sreeves337
Sreeves337

What do you mean? What sounds like Bs. The story he tells or the fact that it happened? This is just a nothing comment put something usefull or constructive for people can work with that

Sarah
Sarah

As someone who was sexually assaulted at a young age, I was extremely moved by your openness. Although my parents do know, we have never discussed it since the initial conversation and I have never told anyone else.

You are a good man in your forgiveness. I have, at times, had thoughts as to whether I could bring a child into this world. I am a parent now and will give everything in me to preserve the innocence of my children. I wish you the best and please know that our scars do not have to scar our children.

HelgaGutmorgen
HelgaGutmorgen

Thank you for sharing your story. Having a similar story. I had to pull my car over and listen. There have been times when I have wondered if I shouldn't seriously investigate my brother's activities over the years. My train of thought following yours...nearly to the point of "scraping him off like dog poop." I confronted him finally 25+ years later. With a quivering voice he denied all that is so deeply seared into my mind, remembered as my childhood and shattered innocence. I see him as rather pathetic now. I wish he could have apologized. I hope to God he really doesn't remember because of past time and not because he has done it so often. Thanks again for sharing and making me feel a little less alone.

ES
ES

Sounds like bs to me.

Guest
Guest

Joe, you are an absolute idiot.

Guest
Guest

Thank you David for sharing your story. What I am curious about is how often parents talk to their teens not only about preventing being molested, but also to emphasize that molesting another child is wrong and a crime. It should be in teens' nature to know when an action is wrong, but perhaps more vigilance and action is needed to also guide potential teen molesters away from acting on their newly developed sexual urges. As a girl, I did encounter instances where male family friends or cousins in their teen years tried to act on those urges. Parents don't want to believe their children are capable of such heinous behavior, but it would be ignorant to not add this counsel in addition to the typical sex talk about the birds and the bees.

Greg
Greg

David, thank you very much for sharing your story. I heard you on NPR today, then read your story on the Westword sight. When I was younger than 10, I was sexually abused several times by a teenager neighbor boy, and once by a male teenager cousin. Both were approximately 10 years older than me. I understand the power of shame and guilt you expressed in your story. For several years, I have given passing thought to confronting my former neighbor. The shame and the worry about my parents have prevented me. My cousin died a young man many years ago. Until hearing your story, I felt very alone. And ashamed. Thank you for your courage and honesty. Grace and Peace, Greg.

Nancy_Rodriguez
Nancy_Rodriguez

Heard your story on NPR. I was so moved. It takes real courage to tell your story. I read the story again online and browing through the comments, I'm so angry at the unsympathetic and those that question your innocence. What is wrong with these people? I can't help thinking they must be pedophiles themselves or sociopaths incapable of empathy or compassion. As a result of your story I went home and had a conversation with my 4 year old son about sexual abuse and keeping secrets. I told him to tell me if anyone did anything to him even if it a friend's parent, older child, or one my friends. I think he still associates the bogeyman or the "bad man" as a stranger. I can only continue to reinforce that it could be anyone and hope that it sinks in. I also told him it's never too late to tell me even if it happened a long time ago. I pray God my children stay safe. Thank you again for sharing your story and for being so brutally honest.

Arg43658
Arg43658

Joe ; you are a self righteous ....

Kay Merkel Boruff
Kay Merkel Boruff

David, I recently heard your story on NPR. It was very powerful. The Romans scripture--Do not take revenge. Leave room for God's wrath--was an important point. A man lived with my brother, a Viet-Nam vet, and abused him horribly, and in the interim turned the house where I was raised into a drug house filled with other vagrants. Twice I have been in court evicting the man and finally he will be forced to leave and my niece can take possession of her grandmother's house left to her by her father. I'm trying to focus on the humanity of this evil man and your story has helped in the process. I trust you continue to enjoy the journey. You're on the "write" track.

Joe Harleyrider
Joe Harleyrider

So, did you turn yourself into the law enforcement authorities for illegally buying a gun and planning a murder? And what did you do with the illegal gun? Surely you walked into your local BATFE office and surrendered yourself and your illegal gun with the valid and reasonable explanation that you weren't going to need it, right?

thewinterriders
thewinterriders

@Joe Harleyrider    Joe, you are truly soft as puppy $#1+. If you are intelligent enough to master the act of procreation, I suggest that you get neutered.

Guest
Guest

David, yesterday I heard your report on NPR about the aryan group out west. I decided to google you and found this story. It touched me. Thanks for letting the world know.

Guest
Guest

David,

You mentioned how you were attacked, how you felt unsafe. What about when you were stalking the family, watching the children get on the bus by the playground and baseball field with a gun in your possession. What about all the late night sitting in front of the house with intent to kill and harm his family...who were innocent? You were arrested on stalking charges. People, don't be fooled by this pathetic man. He's not as innocent as he seems.

MotherOnTheGo
MotherOnTheGo

David

You are a brave man, individual and child of God. I dont know how vulnerable it mus have felt, but I read your sory not once but again and and agin and can only imagine the guilt associated with it- things like- did you invite trouble? did yu not try to stop it? did you want it? Such things muddle and confuse even a sane mind..... You are a true life hero, to put it as yo deemed fit. Not everyone can say i like you did!

A.B.
A.B.

I recently heard about this podcast through my husband, who found the story to be exceptionally remarkable. I am a survivor of molestation as well, I was molested by one of my brother's friends at the age of three. He was eleven and had the opportunity to inappropriately touch me. Luckily the experience was brief and not reoccurring. Throughout my childhood, I had no recollection of the experience; I blocked the story out of my memory until I started dreaming about it as a teenager. Not long after the dreams began, I took the concern to my mother, asking her if she knew about what had happened to me. She denied my questions and told me I must have been imagining it, upon further pressure she conceded that what I said was true; my brother had told her years earlier of the experience. He had been in the same room at the time and was ashamed he had let it happen. In response to my anger, she explained that she did not know how to handle the situation at the time, hence her avoidance of the topic. The years of inconsolable anger finally made more sense to me.

I have many female friends who have had similar experiences, most of them far more severe than mine. Some have been raped repeatedly by their stepfathers or mother's boyfriends. What strikes me is the fact that the author has been able to tell his story, regardless of the intolerance and shame our society has regarding sexual abuse experienced by males. I believe this abuse is highly underreported and I wish more men had the strength to tell their story and contribute to the statistics.

This story has evoked emotion in me that reminds me of the passion I hold in sexual violence and child molestation education. Over the years, I have made a point to be open and honest about my experience, hoping to help others understand how shockingly common sexual abuse is. I currently work in the field of mental health, and hope to direct my concentration in this specific type of trauma. Unfortunately, this story does not bring me closure, though I am glad it has done so for the author.The fact is, many child molesters and rapists go without fair consequences or treatment; it is unlikely offenders will receive psychiatric help, and this increases the likelihood of re-offending.

Thank you to the author and others who have posted their experiences. The ability to discuss this topic is vital to research and improved understanding of the motivations, as well as the consequences of sexual abuse.

Emily
Emily

What do you expect him to do? As was explained, it had been too long for any legal action to be taken . The parents and wife of the attacker know, and it is now up to them to protect the children. Just because you react in one way to your own attack doesn't mean that all others react the same way, and it's disgusting how you condemn him for not acting the same way as you. Why you would call it shameful for Mr. Holthouse not to scream news of his rape from the roof tops I don't know. It obviously was hard enough for him to talk about this with his parents, let alone the strangers he would have to go into details of the event with when warning them about his attacker. It seems to me that you are the one who has not let go of your anger, in that you are so on the attack and offense in your comment. Maybe it is time you learn to let things go not for your attacker, but so you can live a happy life and stop attacking fellow victims for the way they reacted in the situation.

Loneliness
Loneliness

@jpotter: What an articulate, compassionate response to Lynne. I agree fully. I hope everyone finds a way to heal and help others heal, like Mr. Holdhouse did for so many of us.

Loneliness
Loneliness

I contacted my abuser via email twenty some years after I was his victim. He responded that he was a victim himself. That did nothing to assuage my anger and told him so in one last response and blocked his email address for good. That made me feel a bit in control. I had not intention of establishing communication whatsoever, I just needed to let him know the damage he caused. His response did nothing to ease my pain; however, just writing to him, letting him know how his actions affected me throughout my life, putting the blame and shame on him gave me a certain amount of peace. I demanded that he seek out all of his victims and apologize, that he atoned. As he is a close relative of mine, I told him I expected him never to approach me or even dare be in the same place as me ever again, least I screamed right there and then publicly who he really was. He attended our dear aunt's funeral but remained hundreds of feet away, I happen to notice him only by accident. I suspect he was fearful. I hope he was ashamed. He was invited by unsuspecting relatives to my own wedding (common thing in my culture) but he was smart enough not to attend. My only regret is that I never went public (like Mr. Holthouse, I am protecting my extended family from having to deal with this, my mother and siblings know) I never knew who else was victimized, I was never able to reach out to these people and say "I know what you've gone through. If I'm OK, maybe I can help you get there too."

Baldo, please don't give your abuser any more power than he/she already has had over you. Don't waste any more of your precious life with this terrible negative energy that consumes only you. Instead of focusing on revenge, focus on finding a way to let go. I was unable to bring my abuser to justice, I hope you are. Talk about your experience with someone you trust and/or with a mental health professional. DO NOT BOTTLE IN YOUR FEELINGS AND THOUGHTS. Even if no punishment befalls your abuser by talking, it really is a cathartic experience that will begin the healing. Last but not least, turn the negative into positive: find a way to help others who suffer. Find a charity, a cause you believe in and give. Whatever it is that is positive in you, give it abundantly. I am convinced that when you ease someone else's pain, yours lessens by leaps and bounds. I wish you healing.

A friend.

Loneliness
Loneliness

David Holthouse might have gone 'psycho' after years of painful memories, the effect on his soul/mind of keeping a such a horrendous secret and dealing with the trauma on his own. But to say he is as sad as the rapist, that's just a complete lack of compassion and empathy on your part. You are, indeed, the personification of a 'sad person.'

Perhaps those of us who can relate on some level --whether victims of rape, molestation or simply keeping a terrible childhood secret-- understand the power of pain, anger and powerlessness.

D.L. Mayfield
D.L. Mayfield like.author.displayName 1 Like

Thank you to the author for giving a voice to those who are unable to confront.

anuran
anuran

I'm glad you found some measure of closure without violence. A good man should not go to jail for disposing of vermin.

Tim K
Tim K

Thank you for your bravery. I too listened to the podcast the other morning and had to pull over because the tears came so suddenly. I wept like I was a little boy again, wishing for it to stop.

At least Holthouse was told that he was sorry by his perpetrator. You and I will never have that opportunity. God bless you, friend.

TK

Guest
Guest

Listened to this as a podcast, driving in to work this morning. And, as he described his rape, I was washed over with fear - felt so overwhelmed by it that I wanted to pull over for fear of losing control of my car.

I survived a molestation by a stranger, when I was a child. My younger sister was with me when it happened. She does not want to remember or admit it, yet. We never told anyone that it happened.

We were about 10 or 11 years old. Walking downtown. A man talked my sister and I into getting into his truck to help him out by showing him where our school was, so that he would know where it was when his nephew moved to town. He then drove us to a secluded parking lot & forced us to give him oral sex. When it was over, he drove us back downtown & dropped us off. Then, we walked home. I'm not sure how or why we decided not to tell. I don't remember any threats specifically. I don't know what explanation we gave when we got home for our tear-stained faces.

Because it was a one time incident with someone who I don't believe that I have ever met again and only involved oral sex, I minimize the ways that it has affected my life. But, this quote from the story has me stopped cold, though, this morning - "I did have a tremendous fear of becoming a father, because I didn't believe I'd be able to protect my child from people like him."

When my own daughter was 5 years old, a stranger tried to get her to go into his truck while she was playing outside. Her brother ran into the house & got dad, who came outside just after my daughter had remembered to run away from strangers who wanted her to go into their car. He had driven away by the time dad came out. The police never found the man or his truck.

But, that was so close to my own story. And, it all came rushing back to me. It took years, after that, for me to let them play unsupervised in our own suburban yard again. Let alone go up the street or around the corner on their own. And, my daughter felt my fear, too, no matter how much I tried to be reasonable about it & not taint her with my terror about what might happen or might have happened to her. To them both.

And, maybe that's why we decided to keep our kids so close to us. Even now, at 9 & 11 years old, they have only been to a few sleepovers in their lives - and only one that was at a friends, not a relatives. And, most of those relative ones have been the easiest, for me, when there were no men or older boys living in the house with the relative.

I think back on that man who did that to my sister & I, years ago. I wonder where he is. I wonder who else he molested or raped. I wonder if he ever got caught. I wonder how many other slightly broken or badly broken people out there were affected by him. I wonder why we didn't tell and wonder if we could have saved other kids by telling. I know he's broken - that he wouldn't do that if he wasn't - I know I should feel sorry for him and I do, a bit. But, it's more of a sadness for all of the broken people in the world.

And... I read this story. Read the words telling the story of the rape. I read the stories of the other attempted molestations & rapes in this article. I read newspaper stories about other children raped, molested, murdered, living in terror and can all too readily imagine my own children in those stories - afraid, not knowing what's going on, what's wrong, why this person is hurting them, not knowing how to escape or whether to tell. I'm afraid that, maybe, someone has hurt my children and that they are scared to tell or embarrassed to tell. I know, for sure, that sometime this weekend, I will ask them, again, if anyone has ever touched their private parts. I will talk to them about what sex is and why it's wrong to do it to children.

I will hold them close & hope that I can keep them safe from people like him.

Brian
Brian

You're even sadder than the two of them for writing this comment.

Mike
Mike

You are ignorant and brash for saying this. If you read this article you clearly realize that he knew that and had come to terms with this at one point. He knew not to let the bogeyman appear human because he would have sympathy. Denouncing someone for what they are and have realized is unfair and a waste. He did what he thought was right and in all fairness was right. He was going to do it to protect the ones he loved and ones who needed protection. He was going to preserve the bogeyman's image at the expense of what his life truly was. The fact that he called off his plans alone is enough for him to be commended for. That he would also have a civil conversation with his bogeyman makes him a great man and better than I could ever be.

Guest
Guest

You are a psycho to be plotting one's death. You're just as sad of a person as he is.

Keith Alan Morris
Keith Alan Morris

Yes me too. Willard a national church leader raped me over a 2 year period ending in 1972. I looked for him for years to try to make sure he was not hurting other children. I found Willard in 2008 and another was brave enough to have him convicted. I sent Willard a "I Remember Letter" and will do anything to protect other children from having to experience such pain. For the past 10 years I have been sharing my story publicly and every time I have had at least one person come to me and share that they too were abused and had never told anyone. Thank you for sharing and healing. Keith Morris

 movinforward
movinforward

This is a scenario that happens way to often in our world.

I am 1 in 4 statistic but I will NEVER let that hold me or mold who I am and will continue to be.

I am so proud that you did not let your abuser win by killing him.

I was personally molested from age 5 to age 11. From so many different people I really can't begin to say how many. Family, friends of my family and friends of my brothers.

It became so common to me that I thought it was just normal for all boys and men to touch little girls like that. I got to the point I just tuned it out they would come and do their thing and I would just zone out during that time and try to forget.

Since this all has happened to me I made a personal choice not to let it ruin me or mold who the statistics say I need to become. I did have a chance to confront one of the many people who did horrible things to me and when I did he said no I never did that. So I know some people might own up to what they have really done to us victims but most will never.

In my mind after I confronted him it made me think maybe it didn't happen with him at least maybe it is just because so many others did do this to me I think he did as well but then I thought harder and I know that I am right. I just makes me sad to think he can't just say yes and I am so sorry for taking away your child hood innocents.

I think the only peace I have ever found is giving it back to God asking him for my healing and asking him to help me cope with the pain of the memories and it worked.

I don't dwell on the past I have move on but now I am a Mom to two precious little girls and I will do everything in my power to never let them become a 1 out of 4.

Peaceful Focus
Peaceful Focus

I am a survivor of multiple accounts of sexual abuse from different people -- both male & female. I've overcome the effects -- weighed 600 pounds, actively suicidal, self mutilation, drug use, drop out of school, etc -- with one driving motivation: to do what I can to lessen the chance sexual abuse will occur to anyone (boy, girl, man, woman, transperson) and to provide help for recovering to those who have. I am VERY fortunate to be a psychotherapy intern at the Monterey County Rape Crisis Center in Monterey, California. There we have one of what recent research has found to be only 22 viable groups in the WORLD for male survivors to heal. In addition I openly speak of my experiences as a survivor to audiences, in documentaries, articles, interviews. I also educate professionals & laypeople on male sexual abuse victimization. Healing from those horrific acts was one of the most difficult, painful things I ever did...and one of the very best. I love who I am -- and I also well remember the wish I had as a six year old when I grew up: to die. That was my one goal, my one hope until I was 35 years old & found help.

I urge you -- baldo -- & anyone on this list who is a survivor -- male, female, or something else entirely -- to contact your local rape crisis center for help, to accept nothing less than. Help IS out there -- admittedly so much more difficult to find for males & gender variant people -- but it exists. Do what no one did when you were a kid: stand up for yourself because YOU ARE WORTH IT.

I am living proof that a victim can become a survivor...can become something more even in the face one of the most horrific experiences a human being can undergo. I dropped 400 pounds, graduated top of my Graduate class (& want a PhD), a respected professional. Best of all, I love to be alive -- I approach life & living with a child's innocent joy because for the first 3 decades of my life I believed what several people's actions taught me: I was worthless & it was all my fault.

They were wrong.

Allan
Allan

I was molested twice at 9 and 12. I never told because I rightfully judged my parents as uninvolved, uninterested. Still, they don't think it's important, or matters, after I've told. I really blame society more than them for that. Because that is the lesson our society teaches in large part still. So, don't side with the perpetrator. Don't stay uninformed and silent. Your story talks about the many molesters that persued you. Where were your parents? Everyone! Take a lesson here. Learn to see them as David did. If a child can recognize a molester, for god's sake you sure can too! Open your eyes. It's the ones not reading this more so.

David, speaking out is probably the biggest thing you can do to protect children, and even advance your own healing. It's a powerful story that raises a lot of good issues for people to grapple with. Keep talking!

I'd suggest you attempt to get by choice or force, your perpetrator to take a lie detector test with a sex offender treatment center or perhaps elsewhere. An evaluation. To verify he has no more victims or risk. I tend to believe him, but we should not take chances. Simple to do. Check it out. Might save a child, a life, literally. You're right. He a wounded person too. I don't hate him. I don't want him to hurt a child is all.

I hope you will say more about how big the effects of your abuse were and are. Obvious difficulties. Blaming the victim is common. That early binge drinking speaks volumes to me though about what was probably going on. Best wishes to you

Joe
Joe

May God grant peace to anyone who goes through this. May he help me understand, as a parent, how I can protect my kids from experiencing any such thing. May he help me understand just why the *(*&(*^*&^ he could allow any such thing happen to an innocent child. Hearing this account was numbing, humbling, arresting and flat out confusing.

TheTsunamiofKarma
TheTsunamiofKarma

I didn't read your story when it was first published -- like most of the commenters, I heard you speaking on This American Life this morning. I'm a survivor of child sexual abuse, and I can tell you that while the experience (which lasted months, right under my parents' noses) didn't destroy my life, it damaged it severely. I know you understand this -- you describe facets of your life that are directly related to your experience (your feelings about having children, for example). I have struggled for years with the difficulty of dealing with this; I appreciated the choices that you made. I particularly responded to the things you said about your parents -- protecting them for literally decades instead of speaking out, and then when you did tell them, being accepted, protected, defended by them. I loved that your mother called his parents and laid it all out for them. Obviously, I didn't have that experience with my family when I finally (40 years later) told them.

It sounds to me like your decision to meet with your abuser and talk to him was the mechanism that allowed you to let go of your rage and pain and move on, at least to some extent. I've chosen to do that without contacting my abuser; it's a lot harder, and your story made me wish I'd had the strength to do that.

@Lynne (who may never see this): legally, there's probably nothing that can be done that would effectively protect the children in this perp's life. Mr. Holthouse did everything that should be done to protect those children -- told the man's wife and parents. They are the ones who are now responsible for protecting those kids, and share in the responsibility for whatever happens to them. Mr. Holthouse is right that it's very unusual for a pedophile to admit his wrongdoing, or to discuss it without rationalizing it. I'm also skeptical that this guy only had one victim, and that it was a momentary impulse never repeated (he did a lot of things after the event that indicate shame and regret were his primary responses at the time). But again, there's nothing else to be done about that.

It's very easy to accuse someone of denial, a label that doesn't hold up given the depth and detail with with Mr. Holthouse described his experience, at age 7 and since then. It's a way of dismissing someone else's reality that makes you uncomfortable, without dealing with the reasons for your discomfort. Your wild and very angry accusations sound more like someone who hasn't finished her own healing. Speaking from experience, I suggest that you work on that instead of attacking someone that you actually have a great deal in common with.

Thanks, Mr. Holthouse. Every time one of us speaks, the rest of us are lifted up. Be well.

baldo
baldo

I've been in the same situation as the victim. Great story. Anyone know how I can shed MY anger? I keep looking for ways to express my story too but to no end. I want to rid myself of the constant violent fantasies I have of revenge, the constant rage inside me.

NPRFan
NPRFan

Thank you. I heard your story on This American Life and immediately came home, looked this article up online, recommended it to my husband, and read it again. Thank you for sharing your story so others can learn. Your experience is unique, and your own, and you touched my heart. There are no "should haves" or "could haves", simply what is in your life, and your voice. I wish you peace.

Erinjo01
Erinjo01

Heard this riveting story today on NPR's "This American Life." I had a "driveway moment" at the local grocery store, having to stay in my car to hear the last of it.

I am so sorry this happened to you, and I applaud you, as a fellow writer, for speaking out through the pen about something so terrifying, so wrong and so painful. I am the daughter of a sexual offender, and he is no longer in my life. Though he lives a mere seven miles away, he will never again be around my children.

I do not believe that you were this guy's only victim, and I urge you to do all you can to make sure he isn't molesting his own children or others close to him.

Sexual abuse is an ugly, ugly thing. Again, I am proud of you for telling your story. As a parent, I am humbled and frightened about the things that can and do happen. I strive with every ounce of my being to make sure it won't happen to my kids. All parents should do the same.

Thank you, David. God bless you.

MIchael D. Hurley
MIchael D. Hurley

More parents should pay attention to their kids. 1 in 4 girls are raped or molested by 18.

accidentalfission
accidentalfission

Such a powerful piece and only four comments? Strange. Not strange however is the man openly admitting his guilt. He was a sociopath at age 17 but grew into fuller humaneness. It happens. People change.

Doesn't excuse what he did, just explains it. Certainly doesn't undo the damage to all involved. All the data isn't in yet. The experts aren't so expert in this field. Wish I had more words of comfort.

Thank you so much for writing this.

Sandy
Sandy

I admire your courage to write your story. It is a great relief to be able to end years of unjustified shame. I understand all to well trying to "protect" my family. My family, like yours, came through with love and support. After 25 years, I can put the shame where it belongs, on the child molester.

Lynne
Lynne

I just watched your interview on 20/20, and realized I had to read your story in order to get the full picture...I, too am a survivor, and I must tell you that your story minimizes the effects of the trauma of rape, I guess you haven't quite resolved it within yourself yet - to simplify it as you did is a grave injustice to those who still suffer. You are still protecting your perpetrator, and enabling him to continue abusing children. Do you really honestly believe that you were that 'special' to him that he only did it once?? The violence alone in which your rape took place is, in and of itself, shows the sociopathic nature of your perpetrator...On 20/20 you neglect to talk about your perpetrators sociopathic behavior with the cat, he is obviously a very sick man - but that's really not my concern...my concern lies in his children, stepchildren and all other children that may be in his reach. It doesn't seem to me that you've forgiven him, or yourself yet, nor do I think you will ever reach that goal. What I do believe with all my heart and soul is that you are in denial of all that has happened to you - that is clear in your article when you talk about getting drunk and not remembering what happened - do you really believe nothing happened that night?? Big deal if he admitted raping you - that means nothing - rapists and child molesters are well-known for their sly way of manipulating all those around them. Unfortunately, despite knowing what happened to you, you continue to live in a world of denial. You have done a great injustice under the guise of forgiveness - it's sad and shameful that you have such little concern for all the other children who are likely his victims...

Lynne
Lynne

I just watched your interview on 20/20, and realized I had to read your story in order to get the full picture...I, too am a survivor, and I must tell you that your story minimizes the effects of the trauma of rape, I guess you haven't quite resolved it within yourself yet - to simplify it as you did is a grave injustice to those who still suffer. You are still protecting your perpetrator, and enabling him to continue abusing children. Do you really honestly believe that you were that 'special' to him that he only did it once?? The violence alone in which your rape took place is, in and of itself, shows the sociopathic nature of your perpetrator...On 20/20 you neglect to talk about your perpetrators sociopathic behavior with the cat, he is obviously a very sick man - but that's really not my concern...my concern lies in his children, stepchildren and all other children that may be in his reach. It doesn't seem to me that you've forgiven him, or yourself yet, nor do I think you will ever reach that goal. What I do believe with all my heart and soul is that you are in denial of all that has happened to you - that is clear in your article when you talk about getting drunk and not remembering what happened - do you really believe nothing happened that night?? Big deal if he admitted raping you - that means nothing - rapists and child molesters are well-known for their sly way of manipulating all those around them. Unfortunately, despite knowing what happened to you, you continue to live in a world of denial. You have done a great injustice under the guise of forgiveness - it's sad and shameful that you have such little concern for all the other children who are likely his victims...

 
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