Nothing Ever Happened

This story was submitted anonymously.


Nothing ever happened.

Mostly, it was flattering.

Sometimes, it was weird.

And sure, a few times it became uncomfortable.

But he was my coach, my parents’ friend, I had crushes on his sons, I’d known him for most of my life, and that was just how he was. Even my parents knew that he had a penchant for commenting on the girls’ butts–my butt. But it was brushed off, that’s just him, we all said.

When I cried my way through practices and teenage angst he listened. A constant in my life, I turned to him for those first painful steps as I grew from the young girl he first started coaching eight years earlier, into a confident adult. He was my savior, and so I forgave him for telling me I had a nice ass.

Years later a detective called and threw my memories into a turmoil of what ifs.

What if I had responded differently.

What if in that time of early internet chat rooms, I hadn’t told him to go talk to his wife instead of me.
What if I had done something other than laugh and run off when he told me I was making him hard.
What if I hadn’t had any self-confidence.
What if I was joining the sixteen year old in the court case against him.
What if I was the one that would send him to jail and put him on the sexual offender list for life.

Would I have had the courage to do it?

Even now, years and three children since that phone call, I still think of him. Sometimes he invades my dreams and sometimes I see him in the smiling faces of our friends when they talk to my daughters.

And I think, what can I do?

What can I do to instill that kind of self-confidence in my girls?
What can I do to recognize that intent in the adults around me?
What can I do for my girls?

And if the time comes, and I suspect, fear or know, will I have the courage to act?

My biggest hero has turned into my biggest nightmare and nothing ever happened.

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8 thoughts on “Nothing Ever Happened

  1. While I think our justice system is completely screwed up, have you tried to get anywhere with the police? I’m sorry, just the thought of a creep like this still out there makes me sick to say the least.

    Thank you for having the courage to share such a deeply personal story.

    Like

  2. But that IS something. Any unwanted touch is something.

    The “family friend” who molested my sister for a long time once put his hand on my breast. I reacted quickly and decisively, and didn’t think much of it until I turned into a wreck suddenly during one (wanted, paid for!) massage a few years ago. He had violated my body and my wishes. He had made me feel a little less that my body was mine and more that it was community property, no matter how I responded.

    I felt so guilty for so long when I realized what was one-time for me was routine for my younger sister.

    My sister and I were fortunate that my mom believed us. I have talked to many who were not only disbelieved but scorned, and I can say that belief is one of the most powerful things you can give your kids, up front and after the fact.

    I have already had the conversation with my five-year-old. I have let him know he is especially to tell me anything someone asks him not to tell, and that their threats–if any–are meaningless. I will always love him.

    I highly highly recommend the books Protecting the Gift and The Gift of Fear bu Gavin de Becker. He turned his traumatic childhood into wisdom guiding his career teaching others how to protect themselves and their loved ones. His books have been, for me, life-changing.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Listen to your kids. Talk with them about predators – they are good at pretending to be friends. Better than the wolf in the story of Red Riding Hood. They are the best con-men in the universe. Growing up I’d hear stuff like: He would never hurt a child or teen because he is a friend, a teacher, an orthodontist, a minister, a trusted adult. I swore that any child in my life would never have to hear that. I told my daughter early on that she was in control of her body and her heart. Believe the child. Why would they lie? Why would your child lie to you about something like that? She wouldn’t.

    Liked by 4 people

  4. You simply educate them. Teach them to stand up for themselves and what behavior is okay and what isn’t. You were brave enough to not fall for his crap. Good for you. I am sorry that your hero was taken away… emotionally and psychologically that’s tough. Hugs

    Like

  5. The previous comments have said it all. Educate your children and believe them when they tell you that something is wrong. Oh, and remind them that predators are not always ugly on the outside.

    Thank you for sharing.

    Like

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