Letter… To the one who stole my childhood.

Last year I did a series of posts where others sent me letters they wanted to write. I received letters of regret, love, confession and thanks. They were beautifully written and many were poignant. I never shared my own letter, but I did write one.
So tonight I am ready to share mine.

I met you when I was only a child, and was drawn to you. You were well known and greatly respected in your chosen field. I was delighted to be “liked” by you, and enjoyed the extra support and encouragement you gave me.
You were my coach, my mentor. In time you became more important to me than my parents, family or friends.
I was happy to be around you, to babysit for you, to have extra training with you.

You were using me. Creating a friendship built on a lie. After a few months grooming you made your move. Within weeks you had enveloped me in a giant net, from which I could not escape. I was thirteen years old.

Too young to understand. I did not have the courage to ask for help. My friends didn’t understand, and most deserted me. My reaction to my distress, shame and hurt at what was happening, caused me to become withdrawn at home. My parents could not reach me. Even surrounded by brothers, sisters and loving parents, I was alone.photo credit: apdk via photopin cc
You had succeeded in your mission.

As I grew up, you tightened the noose. You stalked me. Trying to control every moment of my day from a distance.
However you made one miscalculation. I was not as weak as you thought. A combination of my mothers steely nature and my fathers quiet strength, allowed me to break free.

I met a wonderful man, who along with some incredible friends picked up the pieces.
They made me whole once more. Yes I was battered and scarred, but no longer broken.

And then I came looking for you.

I discovered many more who were also looking. You ran, escaping to a faraway country. The news broke. My family struggled. Unwelcome notoriety came knocking on our door. Others took up the call and went looking for you.
A legal loophole stopped us. You would not be sent back.
We would never have our day in court.

Some may say we never got justice.

I say that I am well and happy. You took my childhood but that is only a few short years, I have reclaimed my life.
I am glad I will never again see you.
I will never forget what you took from me, nor will I ever forgive you. But you no longer control my life.
You cannot say that about your own life. You have to be ever watchful. Because wherever you go we find you.
Journalists and police keep an eye on you.
You are scorned in your own neighbourhood.

As I hug my husband and hold my children close, I smile as I think of you.
Abandoned by your family, watched by the authorities, suffering from ever increasing financial difficulties. You are living the life you deserve.

I am writing this letter to let you know,
I too am living the life I deserve!

If you would like to read the other letters in this series you can find them here.

121 thoughts on “Letter… To the one who stole my childhood.

    1. I’m not sure it has helped but your comment certainly does. Writing the letter did help me think it all through though and understand how far I’ve come.
      Thank you

  1. Tric:
    Firstly, I am so very, very proud of you! BIG BIG HUGS.
    Secondly, I know this could not have been easy for you to finally, and publicly, to boot…
    If I may, I’d like to quote you and add my own two cents to your fiercely courageous words:
    ***”However you made one miscalculation. I was not as weak as you thought.”
    Aye, Tric – I’m pretty sure this monster didn’t mean to mess with Superwoman.***
    All My Love and Support, I’m in your corner Sweets! Xx

    1. Thank you. Thanks for knowing how big a deal it is and thanks for supporting me here. If I’m superwoman I’m not sure what I could call you.
      What a fab comment.

  2. Thank you so much for sharing your letter with us. I’m so sorry for what you’ve been through but wanted to congratulate you on finding strength and living the life you deserve. ❤

    1. Thank you Helen. It was a long time ago but in many ways a part of us is always that child we used to be.
      Thanks for reading and commenting.

  3. Strong, courageous as always I applaud you Tric with a tear in my eye, I am away now to reblog, this post should be an encouragement to all those who fear “coming out”

    1. C.J. you are most kind. Thank you so much. It was easy to write but not quite so easy to share. Thanks for the reblog I hope it helps someone.

  4. That was a painful read. I can’t imagine the feeling to live it and then recount it.
    I only hope that Everytime you tell your story you are able to let it go a little more, let others help carry the weight so that you can walk protected in the safety of those around.

  5. YES! Damnit! YES TRIC! This is so empowering! To be able to say it, write it, pound it in to the pavement. You verbalized this so incredibly well. YOU reclaimed your life. You are living your life. You are owning your world. I am so impressed. And a little more empowered myself. You are strong.

    1. Thank you Colleen for all your support when I touch on this topic. Your line that you are ‘a little more empowered’ means the world to me. I have never forgotten a post you wrote about your past a while ago. Thanks again Colleen. (Oh and I’m back after a crazy week)

      1. While I was reading your letter I kept hearing a line in the back of my thoughts “you are stronger than you know”. To all those children who need to know….they are stronger than what was done to them. They are stronger than that evil person. And they are better than all of it. Thank you.

        1. What a perfect comment in this situation. Isn’t that all we really want to say to those who are a bit further behind on the road to recovery?
          Thanks Colleen. We were indeed much stronger than we thought and so are they. There is life after darkness, and a good life at that to be lived and enjoyed.

    1. Thank you. I don’t feel strong, just ‘normal’. I’ve not posted it on facebook yet. I’ll see how I feel about it tomorrow. (maybe not that strong!)

  6. This is the definition of brave, amazing courage to post this Tric! It’s ovbious who the winner is here! Very proud to know you, even if only online! Love and hugs xox

  7. I am sorry for what you had to endure. I applaud your ability to write about it and not let it break you….

    1. It came close to breaking me a long time ago but thankfully I had the best of friends and partner who got me through. It’s now just a part of what makes me me. However I found it very hard to share this. I wrote it ages ago.
      Thanks for reading and commenting. It really helps.

  8. Wow! I respect and admire you for having the strength to publish this! Good on you and I am so happy for you that you have people around you who love you and are there for you. I am happy that you can live the life you enjoy living! And he is hopefully having a really bad time every single moment of his life!

    1. Thanks so much. I am living a lovely life and I laugh a lot every day which is more than many people get to do, so I do think despite all that happened, that I am lucky to be living the life I have.

  9. I absolutely adore the fact that this person who was scarred and “beaten” to silence was able to find the strength to rise out of the ashes and take back the person they are and not what “he” tried making them to be. I honor you for your strength and courage. I have had to find courage in a surmountable amount opposition and I feel like I am finally flying. I always wanted to be able to fly, and in a small way, I am and so are you. (Hugs)

  10. Dear Tric,
    Thank you for your courage in sharing your letter. I’m so sorry this was such a huge part of your childhood, and grateful that you’ve been able to have such a wonderful adulthood.

    I hope sharing your story will bring some healing for you, as well as some support and encouragement for others who’ve had similar experiences.
    Love, Lucia

    1. Thank you Lucia. I’m delighted I managed to actually share it at last. I feel as if another hurdle has been jumped.
      I’ve had a great life for most of my life and as I look about me sometimes I do think I am as happy if not happier than most people I know. I’m not sure if it’s been a healing process to post it, but it was really bugging me that after all this time I was still being affected by him. So I said ‘enough’ and pressed publish.

  11. Wow Tric,I cannot begin to imagine what you’ve been through.Its a testament to your incredible spirit that you’ve risen above it all and created a fantastic life for yourself filled with people you love and who love you.I hope you’re very proud of the amazing woman you’ve become.

    1. Thanks Aedin. I am indeed happy with my life. I wouldn’t say I’m proud but I do feel strong sometimes and grateful for wonderful friends.

  12. Tric you are an amazing, brave and very strong lady, a true inspiration and it is a privilege to know you, virtually for now I know, but I’m sure we will meet very soon

    1. Thank you. I look forward to our meeting someday. Thanks for your continued online support, especially for this post. It meant so much.

  13. To call you brave Tric only acknowledges that you are a survivor. But as your letter has shown your life after these terrible events has been about so much more so you are simply inspirational.
    To the little girl in your heart and any child or adult that has gone through the same, it may literally save them to know that there is hope.
    Well done xxx

    1. I will admit Helen that your comment almost brought me to tears. Any reference to the little girl I was gets me! I am glad I posted this letter I had hoped it might somehow help someone, but I chickened out of putting it on facebook.
      It’s a start I hope.

      1. You’re allowed chicken out of the tiny things Tric, when you tackle the big things with such courage!
        The comments here alone are inspiring. I hope you realise the power of your words.

  14. Fantastic blog post, thanks for sharing with us. Well done on getting through it all and creating a wonderful life for yourself, I’m sure it can’t have been easy. x

    1. It was definitely not easy, but thankfully it’s done and I am still happy I shared it. I’ve come a long way and am living a very happy life indeed. Thank you Angela for your support.

  15. I hate it that you had to endure having your childhood stripped from you. Your strength in your healing is amazing. Hats off to you for writing such a touching letter!

  16. This gave me chills… 1 in 5 girls and 1 in 20 boys is a victim of child sexual abuse. That even one person is violated is too much. I am glad you do not have to deal with that animal.

    1. Yes and no one else has to deal with him either. It is good to know we managed to stop him even if it were too late for so many.
      Thanks for your support Jackie.

  17. I am glad that you got to get past what happened to you, and became part of a loving family of your own. I never got to say to him how I felt – I was too ashamed to talk about it . . . then. But now he is gone, to hell probably, and I never will get to see the results of his actions on him. But I saw, and continue to see the effects on me, and have come to a place where I am better, but not totally. It is now 4 decades later, I am still single, and my family scattered near and far, around the country. But he doesn’t control me, even if I haven’t been able to get past all of what happened to me.

    1. I still have my days Karen. It does take time, a very long time. I’m glad you are no longer controlled by him, making a good life is a great revenge. x

  18. tric. i am so in awe of you for posting this, i know it has taken a long time and period of recovery and confidence in order to do so. it is the worst thing an adult can do to a child, gain their trust and abuse them in return. i’m so happy you found people, and yourself, who understand what a monster he was, and that it was not you who caused this to happen, you were just a child who didn’t understand, and you suffered long and hard for that. i am confident that he now suffers, in the world in which he lives and by printing this letter, your bravery and strength may help others who suffer in silence to overcome and thrive in spite of their own monsters. hugs to you –

  19. Tric, I’m so glad you got your adulthood back. I hope the other survivors involved have reached a place of peace also. I’m sure this letter will give some people belief in the possibility of recovery and survival. Fair play for heeding your own call to share this. A privilege to read.

    1. Sharing took time but I’m glad I did, even if it was a limited share. I am one of the lucky ones a few have not been so lucky in their recovery. I often wonder why that is, but I’m happy that I’m happy.
      Thanks for your kind words.

  20. Such an amazing piece Tric, I admire you so much for having the strength to share, I truly hope this letter helps so many others break the silence and rebuild their lives xxx

  21. Thank you for sharing. I think every time a survivor shares their story, they empower others to do the same…and possibly saves someone from enduring the silence one more day.

    1. I’d love to believe this might help someone or give them hope but I’m not sure. It was good to share it though. Thanks Cara for your support here on this post.

  22. I’m proud of you, Tric. It can’t have been easy to write this, or to post it. My daughter is 12, and as I read you post I looked at her and imagined her dealing with what you went through. How can any adult manipulate a child like that? So sad, so inhuman. I hope that a close eye is kept on this sad individual.

    1. I know MM. When each of my children came close to that age I found it so sad remembering that small girl I once was.
      Yes he is very closely watched, and is not really ‘living’. If we had gone to court and convicted him he would be out now so I think this is a better result in the long run. Although it was dreadful at the time not to get to court.
      Thanks for the support. I’m glad I did it.

    1. He’s had no contact with his lovely family for over twenty years.
      Journalists here keep an eye on him in the US. The last I heard was that his local neighbourhood watch begin and end outside his apartment each night.
      Definitely not living a ‘normal’ life.
      No wonder I’m smiling!

  23. Tric, I’m so sorry for what you had to experience, but your words and actions are so very empowering and inspirational. I’m grateful you found strength and support in others around you to turn the tables and also to realize that you weren’t at fault. I’m sure it wasn’t easy writing this letter nor sharing it, but I thank you for doing so. Your story can only be of help to others who are in similar situations…sending hugs, Lauren

    1. Thanks Lauren for your kind words. I wrote this ages ago but couldn’t bring myself to share it. Another step along the road I hope. Thanks for your hugs!

  24. Thank you for sharing, I held my breath as I read your letter. Your quiet strength and celebration of healing is a joy. Isn’t it wonderful that while our childhoods were the stuff of nightmares, the men in our adulthoods supported us and helped heal the broken pieces. Sending you love across the miles and ocean waves.

    1. Yes I often think how lucky you and I are to have met such great partners, who gained our trust and helped us heal.
      How’s your book going?

      1. I’ve written 23 of 31 chapters. I still have one or two hard chapters to write. I have put it aside for a while to take a mental break. In its place I am drawing the illustrations to a children’s book that is yet to be written. The main theme is a giraffe that loves to wear sweaters every where she goes. I have two complete pictures and a third one is just waiting on the colors. I will write the story after the pictures are complete. A little backwards, usually one starts with the story but I’m finding it fun to do it this way. As I am working on the pictures I see the words floating around in my head so they are there even if they aren’t written yet. Blessings dear friend.

    1. Thank you, and thanks for taking the time to make contact. I am indeed whole again and really appreciate being in one piece and all I have around me.

  25. I’m glad you shared this. I know from personal experience that “writing it out” definitely helps. There are so many of us that still have not written it out…so many of us that will take our stories to the grave because of shame and misplaced guilt along with fear. You were able to do it, to write that letter. I applaud you!

    1. Yes it is not easy to ‘write it out’. I was watching a holocaust survivor on TV last night. It took him fifty years to be able to speak of what he saw.
      I have shared here, but there is so much I don’t think I will ever speak of. I hope you are doing okay and able to live with all that has happened. If ever you do wish to write an anonymous letter you could and then delete it or burn it, it might let some of it out. Then again if you are doing well, just keep on going.

  26. I am re reading this holding my breath- again. Looking forward to meeting you in real life someday soon and giving you the most heartfelt, monumental HUG. Love, energy and great light to you xxxxx

    1. I got your comment via my phone while I was out this afternoon and you put a real pep in my step. Thank you so much. There are some we meet online who we feel a real affinity with. You are one of those people for me, apart from our so many differences our core beings are very similar.
      Your comment meant so much. Thank you Emily.

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