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My father touched me inappropriately when I was younger and now its hurting my relationships!

Tagged as: Family, Sex<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (14 July 2010) 14 Answers - (Newest, 29 May 2012)
A female United States age 22-25, anonymous writes:

When I was younger I was always scared of the dark. In result, I always ended up sleeping in my parent's bedroom. When I was 5, I soundly went to sleep in between my mom and dad only to wake up in the middle of the night with a hand down my panties. It was my dad, but he seemed asleep. I never said stop, in fear of waking my mom to a horrifying discovery but I shifted in ways to get his hand out of there. It did for a while, I turned over, now facing my mother. Tried to go back to sleep and convince myself it was no big deal. but then he put his hand down the back of my panties, squeezing and rubbing some more. He was still asleep. finally I left and went to sleep in my room. The next morning was normal. my dad seemed normal. for 9 years I kept it a secret. Until I finally told my mom late at night. She bawled and told my dad that same night i went to sleep in my own room. My mom told me he does that. just sexually touches her when hes sleeping. and she scolded him once saying "someday thats gonna be our little girl and then what" but he says he has no control over it. The morning after my mom told him, at 6 am, he stumbly opened my door, said "....sorry." and slammed it shut. My dad was a good guy. i was so surprised at his....uncaringness. from then on, it was never spoken about. for years my sister never knew, till I told her. I feel like i'm the only one who remembers it or hasn't forgotten. I definitely have not forgotten about it. I'm now almost 18 and sexually active(safely of course) and its getting in the way. Sexually and emotionally towards my significant other...and weve been dating for two years now. What do I do? Should I talk to my parents about it? When I try and bring it up they passive aggressively change the subject. Im hurting inside, scarred. What do i do?

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (29 May 2012):

i'm 14 years old, & i'm a girl. i have never been touched inappropriately by anybody related to me, but i think you should tell someone very close to you. an adult you can trust, or a very close friend who you know won't say a word. however, in desperate calls, you must tell your mother if you think this is a serious issue. if i was put into your situation, i would most definitely tell my mother. however, i think it's best not to tell your mother, if you have fear of your parents breaking up. then main key is to talk,talk, talk! good luck 3

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (22 May 2012):

I am now in my 40s and when i was very young I do not even remember how old, my father touched me in ways that fathers should not touch a daughter and asked me if it tickled? Recently for some reason way back in my mind i hid it and blocked it out, i guess my way of survival was to just tell myself it did not happen. But it did and I have daughters and now I have a granddaughter. It is my responsibility to now speak out. I do not understand in my mind why it took so long to come out but this is something i will work through. Judgement of others is not something i think is appropriate for anyone. Walk a second in the shoes of someone who has been abused and until then do not judge or comment. Those who do have no idea or even care about feelings or dark secrets kept that need to come to light. I will not let this empower me any longer, i will take control of this secret.

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A female reader, kerrspink United Kingdom +, writes (13 May 2012):

I completely understand. My Dad did the same thing to me after him and my mum split up. We were having a sleep over at his and I shared the double with him. I woke in the middle of the night with him doing the same as your dad did to you. My dad tried to get me on top of him. He woke when i jumped out of the bed and i ran into the sitting room where my brothers were asleep. He came in after me apologizing and saying he was dreaming about my mum. I now struggle at nights if my husband of 12 years touches me in the wrong place when I am asleep. That's how I came across your post. This weekend I broke down and though about running away because I suddenly realized I cannot cope. I never ever used to think about it until recently. It's caught up with me now tho and I need help.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (16 July 2010):

I agree with celliletta. you're sorta just adding things onto your story now, hon. Sorry, but it's true. No one knew about your father's problems...but why do they matter in all this???

I kick, bite, pinch (I squeeze so hard when i sleep. I will leave bruises on my boyfriend's arms) I'll ask my boyfriend for sex--but I'm not awake. I'm just talking. I have masturbated and touched myself when I slept, too. I do not remember any of it, though. I also talk and yell and still, I have no recollection of any of this. I've been videotaped doing it though. (Yes, I'm such an unpleasant and un-peaceful person to sleep with. Ha)

Point is. He was asleep. You made him sound like he was a nice guy. You made it sound like an accident. Now, you're blaming it on him. You also made it sound like when you were fourteen you were shocked that he didn't care more--so he must've "been a good guy" then. And you make it sound like he still lives with you.

Maybe it is scarring, hon. Talk to a counselor. Don't make your mom or dad feel bad.

I was raped when I was fifteen. Trust me, he was awake. I was awake. He didn't just touch me. For four years, no one could come within two feet of me or I'd scream. I didn't give hugs, I didn't have a boyfriend, I didn't do anything. Now, I've accepted what happened and moved on. I have a boyfriend, obviously, and live a happy, sexual, life. Maybe my nightly habits are part of the scarring from my incident. But I was never a good sleeper.

I'm not saying what happened to you wasn't scarring. It probably is. i sympathize. But go to a counselor, sweetie.

Good Luck. I do understand and sympathize how it might've changed you a little, but it isn't his fault!

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A female reader, Tisha-1 United States + , writes (16 July 2010):

Tisha-1 agony auntIf this past incident is causing problems in your present life with your boyfriend, then it's time to address it. I think you need to seek professional help. The aunts here are amateurs and may not be specifically trained to deal with the repercussions of potential sexual abuse. You state you are hurting inside, scarred and cannot discuss it with your parents. Your father abused alcohol and used drugs as well.

I get the sense that you are getting angry with the answers that have been given you, and that isn't helpful to you either. Be brave and go seek that professional help. Best wishes to you.

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A female reader, chigirl Norway + , writes (15 July 2010):

chigirl agony auntNo, not necessarily. You said: If he honestly true to God didn't know he did that in his sleep, he would have continued to have wandering hands as he sleeps.

You are not a psychiatrist. You are not in a position to say that. You honestly don't know. There could be many reasons why he stopped touching your mother in his sleep, and all you do now I speculating. What you NEED to so is talk to someone who is in a position to actually tell you what might be going on. Don't expect results at once the first time around in therapy, but expect slow results. Little by little the truth about you, and how you can get over this, will come out.

I know for a fact that people do things in their sleep they have no recollection of. Leave it at that for now, until a professional tells you otherwise. Do consider that your mother might have an agenda too, and do not get too coloured by what she says. Your father could have stopped touching her or not? If she was asleep how would she know? And he could have stopped because his subconsciousness was too damaged by knowing that he had touched you. Him stopping to touch your mother in your sleep proves nothing other than that you are keen to framing your father.

You need to work on ways to get over this. Not on ways to frame your father, Framing your dad will never let you get away from this.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (15 July 2010):

This is verified as being by the original poster of the question

I don't appreciate your answers, if you are here to help me I will gladly take a response but picking apart what I said is not what this site is about. You don't know my dad, he WAS a good Guy. Till he started drinking, snorting cocaine and cheated in my mom for seven years. I'm past all those things because we've talked about them

When my sister found out my mom, sister and I were in a huge controversial fight over what to do about my dads addictions and my mom just threw her hands up and said "well he touched Jessica too so now what!" My sister got pissed at her for accusing my dad over something so horrid so I had to tell her its the truth.

I decided to not listen to some advice on here and listened to the majority and talked to my mother. Apparently the last time he ever tried to touch her was the day before he found out. If he honestly true to God didn't know he did that in his sleep, he would have continued to have wandering hands as he sleeps.

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (15 July 2010):

As a father I would be devastated if I were in your dads situation. It was simply an accident. I'm sure he is absolutely crushed by this whole situation. You need to find a way to come to terms with the fact that he had no idea what was going on. He has no memory of anything he did so what else is he supposed to do? You need to seek counciling for sure. Nobody can go back and change what happened so your gonna have to find a way to come to terms in your own mind.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (15 July 2010):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sleep_sex

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A reader, anonymous, writes (15 July 2010):

This is verified as being by the original poster of the question

I don't bring it up to my dad. Last time we talked about it was the day after I told my mom. And my mom told my sister to make sure it didn't happen to her.

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A female reader, Waiting for an angel United States +, writes (15 July 2010):

Get some professional help so you can cope with the events in your life. A therapist will really help you, goodluck:)

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A reader, anonymous, writes (15 July 2010):

As a little girl I was inappropriately touched several times by an older cousin. He actually told me we were going to play doctor. And being only six, I believed him. And I have no other memory I remember so well. He took off all my clothes, licked my non-existent breasts, licked my vagina, played with me, rubbed his penis all over my little body, etc. I was crying silently and so afraid to say anything. I didn't know what was going on and didn't know why he would do such a thing. I was too afraid to tell anyone. He did it several other times.

I told my mother when I was 12. After that though, they all acted like it never happened.

It's scarring. I had nightmares into my teenage years. I was scared. I was half-crazy when I was little. I hated myself. I tried to punish myself. But no one would ever know that. When I was 13 I ended up losing my virginity. It was almost a test to myself to see if I could do it.

I was so messed up and deranged from it! But no one ever thought it would affect me so much.

Get some help. Make you parents--or just your mom--sit down and listen. Talk, talk, talk.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (15 July 2010):

I know how you feel...

I am 19 years old, but When I was 11 years old, my dad touched me inappropiately in the morning when he was still in bed, and would call me into his room. It turned out he did the same thing to 2 out of my 3 sisters. I one day had the courage to tell my mom when I was 16 and then it ended up my dad went to jail for 2 months and was not allowed home for 1 year and a half.

I never had a great relationship with my dad and only do now because I dont live at home. But when I am home he is just like when I was a kid, getting mad about everything.

I dont think it affected my relationships with my bf, other than maybe that I find it hard to say no when I dont feel like having sex and I couldnt say no or stop to my dad when he touched me.

Now I am engaged to a wonderful guy and love him very much. Although even with him I dont like to have sex all the time but find it hard to say no.

It is so unfortunate that things like this happen to people, but in my dads case, it was a cycle, he was inappropiately touched by someone when he was a kid.

My advice for you is the best thing would probably be to get counselling. Dont be ashamed to talk to someone as it can really help.

Good luck :)

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A female reader, chigirl Norway + , writes (15 July 2010):

chigirl agony auntYou need to not talk to your parents about it, but talk to a therapist or psychiatrist. Remember that asking for help is not for crazy people with mental disturbances, but also for completely normal people who encounter problems in theirs lives. Your parents aren't objective to this incident, and are probably deeply ashamed by what happened. That is why they don't want to talk about it. I think it would be best for you to talk to someone who is objective, but at the same time has the capability to listen to your story (not all people can handle hearing these stories), and the ability to actually offer you help and get you through this.

What you should remember, and probably already know, is that your father was asleep and not in control of his actions. This is not something extremely odd. Some people sleepwalk, some people talk in their sleep, and others again have sex in their sleep. So your father usually feeling up your mother in his sleep is not that odd or weird. Be assured he did not mean to fondle you, and he probably never even imagined it would happen. If they could have imagined it happen they wouldn't have let you sleep between them. What he did was not okay under any circumstances, but he did not willingly do this. He was asleep.

As for the scars it left on you, of course this affected you. Of course you remember, and feel the need to talk about it and find help, because you are still suffering from it. So what you need to do is tell your partner and talk about this, then get yourself to therapy. I believe this is the only way you can help yourself move on.

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