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She told me the story of her life. Of the ultimate betrayal by the man she loved, respected, trusted.
She told me the story of a 9-year old whose innocent daydreams turned into a living nightmare after her father raped her.
She told me how the hugs grew longer, tighter. How the goodnight kisses smothered her, choked her, silenced her screams. She told me how the touches became — wrong, uncontrollable, brutal.
She told me of how dirty she felt, of the shame she took upon herself for bringing this on because she wanted to be daddy’s little girl.
She told me how her father told her that she wanted more. That she asked for it, that she liked it. That she made him do it.
She told me of how her mother had slapped her across the face for speaking the devil’s words against daddy. Called her a liar, and warned her to never speak of it again.
How she hated her mother for sending her away to a boarding school. How she hated her mother for siding with him. How she hated her mother for not believing her.
She told me of the pain the rage the resentment that always seemed to be there, boiling beneath the surface.
She told me enough is enough. Told me she wanted the abuse to stop once and for all. She wanted, demanded to see him punished.
She told me she was now ready.
I then took her hand in mine and we walked into the courtroom.Note: The 43 year-old man who sexually abused his 9 year-old daughter was found guilty and convicted of rape and incestuous acts. He is now serving two life sentences, with no opportunity for parole.