Marriage, Children, Anniversaries, . . . and a Pedophile

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Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless; maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed. Rescue the weak and needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.

Psalm 82:3-4

I’m going to do something a little different here today, but I believe God laid this on my heart, so I will follow His lead.

In mid-February, a friend of mine posted a note on Facebook about a homeschool family in a crisis – a real crisis.

silva

Grace

The mom in this homeschool family, Grace, found out devastating news that has forever changed her life. [Note: I’m trying not to identify the sex, so the following wording is awkward.] One of Grace’s children told Grace that the child’s father had sexually abused them. Grace, without skipping a beat, spoke with another child privately and carefully asked if daddy had ever done anything to them. This child confirmed Grace’s worst nightmare. Can you imagine?! As it turns out, several of Grace’s children were sexually abused by their father.

I reached out to my friend privately and asked about the situation: where did this family live? Did they need any help? How could I help? I wanted Grace and her children to be cared for by safe people who understood sex abuse and wouldn’t cause more harm, and if there were any resources I had, I wanted to pass them along quickly. One thing I’ve learned very well from blogging is getting immediate help to someone in a crisis is so important.

I was surprised to hear that this family lives in my area! Not only that, my friend knew Grace personally!

Back to the story: Grace rounded up her kids in the van and called our mutual friend for help while driving to her house.

My friend did the right thing. She encouraged Grace to report to the police and without any hesitation, Grace did. Grace knew this was criminal behavior and went straight to the authorities accompanied by our friend. Oh my word, I have tears in my eyes right now. It doesn’t always work out like this, does it?  What respect I have for Grace!

Grace and her children found a safe place to stay for the night, and the following day, Grace’s husband was arrested. He has been in jail for 27 days now, and will most likely spend a long, long time in prison.

Since this time, I have connected with Grace online, and I also stopped by for a quick visit at her home and met her beautiful children.

Tomorrow, my friend and I are meeting with Grace for lunch. However, it’s going to be a tough day emotionally for Grace. You see, tomorrow is her 20th wedding anniversary.

A month ago, she was looking forward to this occasion, but 3-1/2 weeks ago, her world was turned upside down. The man and the best friend she thought she married turned out to be a fraud. The father of her children is not a protective, loving father, but an abuser who has done serious harm to his family. Her husband has been living this lie for many years.

Grace was married at a young age. She has a high school education. Grace has not been in the workforce; she’s been at home raising her sweet babies and homeschooling them. This . . . . was not in her plan.

She knows that the life that she had planned cannot be, but Grace is being proactive, trying to get things in order. She has plans to get schooling and is trying to figure out the rest of the details for her family. I hope to hear more tomorrow and encourage her in any way I can.

As I think about it, tomorrow is the 20th anniversary of a marriage built on lies and harm. It obviously still has many emotional connections for Grace.  But I was wondering if we as a community at SSB could shower Grace with love, support, and compassion today as she begins a new life.

Here at SSB, we’ve had wives of pedophiles tell their stories and you all have been so kind and encouraging. I gave Grace the link to a blog article written three years ago that still brings women here from search engines and gives them hope. Being the wife of a pedophile is a very, very lonely place to be.

Please pray for Grace. Feel free to leave comments for her. If you feel so inclined to help her financially, here is a fund site set up. It’s going to take a lot of money to keep this family afloat. There is no income coming in . . . zilch, nada. Now tuition, childcare, and therapy need to be added to their budget on top of the normal mortgage, utilities, food bills.  Oh . . . . . did I mention she’s the mother of ten children?  Yes, 10 children.  Now imagine the cost involved.

Thank you in advanced for your prayers, words of encouragement, and financial help for Grace and her sweet family.

Fund link for Grace and her family or you can use Paypal and send directly to e-mail address: lovethesilvas@gmail.com.  Please feel free to share this article.

 

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25 comments on “Marriage, Children, Anniversaries, . . . and a Pedophile

  1. God be with you Grace and your children, I am glad you and your children are safe and I do hope all goes well. Julie Anne thanks as well for the service to the Kingdom. Grace you are an incredibly strong and brave person.

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  2. Grace, first of all, thank you for believing your children. You are a precious mother who is choosing to care for your children, at all cost. “As a mother hen who gathers her chicks under her wings”. Please do not be harsh on yourself or question how you missed what was going on, right in your own home. Pedophiles are masters at deceit and deception. Somehow, they hide out in bright light, for a time until a child dares to speak truth. Blessings on you and your children as you are choosing to live by truth.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. We know what it takes to raise 10 children on 1 income. I can’t imagine with none, with a single parent. This one is horrible. The missus and I are glad to give to help them out.

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  4. Dearest Grace,
    I can barely read the words that Julie Anne has beautifully written because of the tears pouring down my face. I know your pain and I am so proud of the actions you have taken to protect your children. I wrote these words a number of months ago because I was once and maybe still am that broken woman. I want to share them with you on this anniversary that has become so bitter:

    Dearest Broken Woman,

    I see you sitting in the ash heap of what once looked like a beautiful life. You are devastated by a betrayal of incredible proportion and you fear what is yet to come. You sift through the soot and debris looking for something that remains–some remnant of the life you once knew. The intensity of your aloneness is profound; you feel like a pariah, a leper, an untouchable. You are raw from the pain and your eyes have shed more tears than you thought was humanly possible. You long for human comfort and compassion but unfortunately have learned already that few are able to be present in the way that you need them to be. I am so sorry, so very sorry.

    I want you to know that this is not the end of your story or your defining moment. You will survive this because you are far stronger than you ever imagined. This devastation is not the final chapter of your life; there is more, so much more–and it will be good. You will laugh again and experience joy and maybe even love. You cannot imagine that at this moment but it is true. You have a future and a hope and your needs will be provided for. I cannot tell you how but I know from experience that they will be. And though you feel completely alone, you are being held close by the God who collects your tears and saves them in His bottle. He has not abandoned or rejected you; this did not catch Him by surprise.

    Please hear me when I say this: you did not cause this, you could not control it and you certainly cannot cure it. Maybe you’ve tried (assuming you knew what your partner was up to). Whether you knew or not, you certainly tried to maintain a good relationship with him, working hard to keep him interested and connected with you and your relationship. But this is bigger than you and you bear no responsibility for the crimes he has committed. Repeat that to yourself again and again until it begins to sink into your heart. You did not do this and you certainly do not deserve it. This happened to you; you did not do it.

    You grieve for your children. Whether they were victims of his perpetrating behavior or not, they have suffered a grievous loss–a loss of innocence, trust and a parent who may have been a good father to them. But your children are stronger than you think and they are incredibly resilient. They are suffering and their lives will never be the same but living in truth always trumps living inside of a falsehood, even a pretty one. As difficult as this time is for them, they are learning important truths about their father–truths that with love and support may empower them to make different choices in life.

    My dearest sister, please don’t give up. It may seem easier to just end it but don’t add that to the burden your children must bear. You will see better days; the memory of this pain will never go away completely but the intensity of it will diminish. Don’t opt for a permanent solution to a temporary problem–choose to embrace life, even the pain it brings because in the end, life is good. This devastation will be redeemed and one day you will look back on this incredibly painful time as a necessary and good thing.

    Hang on! Reach out to at least one trusted person when you need to; don’t be afraid to tell your story again and again and again and again–as long as it takes to digest what just happened to you. Give yourself space and time to heal and don’t be afraid to feel the pain when it comes. Know that grief is much like the waves crashing on the shore–it comes in quickly and envelops one in pain, confusion and despair. But just as sure as it came in, it will recede again. Take a deep breath and plunge into it because that is the path to healing.

    You are not alone–there are many of us–far too many to count. You are not alone and you will survive. I promise that you will.

    Your sister,
    Brenda

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  5. Grace – Thank you for listening to and believing your children. You are an incredibly strong and brave woman to act immediately. The road ahead may be hard, but I have no doubt that you can work through what comes your way. It is so good to see that you have a strong support system to hold you up and help you out. I will continue to pray for healing and strength for you and your children.

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  6. This is just so tragic and I am so very sorry. I donated and then posted a link to this blog on Facebook, hoping to bring awareness of Grace’s situation beyond the Christian community and to those of all religions – and to those, like me, who subscribe to no religion at all. We can all show generosity of spirit for a family in desperate circumstances who is in dire need.

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  7. @Celeste:

    Please do not be harsh on yourself or question how you missed what was going on, right in your own home. Pedophiles are masters at deceit and deception.

    Successful serial killers, successful pedophiles, successful sociopaths of any kind are masters at camouflaging what they are. If they weren’t, they’d have been caught long ago — we only hear about the ones dumb enough to slip up and get caught.

    “But he was such a NICE boy…”
    — all the relatives and neighbors of a captured serial killer, over and over

    “For Satan himself can transform himself to appear as an Angel of Light.”
    — Some Rabbit from Nazareth speaking on the subject

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  8. Grace was married at a young age. She has a high school education. Grace has not been in the workforce; she’s been at home raising her sweet babies and homeschooling them. This . . . . was not in her plan.

    But it was probably in her pedo husband’s plan: Keep wifey barefoot, pregnant, and sweetly submissive to her man, with nowhere to go.

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  9. I’d be surprised if someone hasn’t thought of this yet, but if the abuse has been going on for 13 years, someone might be able to greatly help this family by making sure the older kids know how to drive and navigate things like employment applications, by helping the family navigate welfare services, and the like. I would bet a nickel that local churches and such would make sure any such volunteer gets a background check, a buddy for accountability, and the like.

    Praying that the perpetrator gets appropriate justice for what he’s done.

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  10. Grace, my heart aches for you, but also rejoices. I rejoice because I know the strength it takes to do what you’ve done; that strength will carry you through to the place of hope, healing, and freedom that God has for you. I rejoice for the safety of you and your children. I rejoice for loving friends who even now are coming alongside with help that’s not “just” spiritual, but physical and emotional as well.

    I have some idea of how hard this is. My divorce after twenty years of marriage, was final one year ago this month. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. I used to pray that I would never stumble across evidence that my ex-husband was molesting my kids, because I knew I’d have to do something about it, take a step I was terrified I’d not have the strength to take (after decades of living with a sly abuser, my sense of self was gone).

    I also know what it’s like to have your world turned upside down in a moment, or small series of moments. I know the disorientation, the nausea, the way the room sometimes spins underneath you. I know, and I’m so sorry – you eleven don’t deserve this. But know this: it will get better. There will be a lightness of being one day that you never imagined possible. You’ll have hints here and there of a God who sees, and who ACTS. You will experience peace, just hints here and there at first, but then growing in strength and frequency until you can rely on it. (I’m not quite there yet, because it’s a long road with a lot of twists and turns-back-upon-itself, but I’m on my way).

    You are in my prayers, dear sister. Peace and love to you and your children.

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  11. Grace – It was not my father, but my grandfather by marriage, who was the pedophile in our lives. When he was finally found out, he was never brought to justice. He lived the rest of his life in freedom, I was told that it would be too hard on my grandmother if she was told about it. I was a child and trusted that my parents were doing the right thing. Now that I am an adult with a daughter of my own, I know how wrong that decision was.

    I cannot even begin to understand how difficult this is for you, but thank you for doing the right thing for your children. You have my prayers.

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  12. Dear Grace, I as so many others, have never met you or your children but I want to say that you are truly a hero to me. Why? Because you BELIEVE–you TOOK ACTION IMMEDIATELY, and you did NOT take the easy way out by sticking your head in the sand in horror and denial, inadvertently causing further emotional repercussions for your children now and in the future! I wish I could give you a hug but I surely can and will PRAY! I wish I could give you thousands or even hundreds of dollars to make your journey easier financially. I am on one check per month but I will see what I can do to help even a little.
    You are my hero because this happened to me… It was my stepfather–the only father figure I had in my life for many years. He began shortly after we moved from New Jersey to Maine, after my mom began working. I was terrified. I had no one to turn to and didn’t even know how to explain what was happening to me. This went on throughout much of my childhood, teens and yes, even into young adulthood because he terrified me and because I didn’t know I could be anything BUT a victim.
    Finally, less than 2 months after I turned 17, I told my best friend. She told her parents and older sister who just happened to work at the Dept. of Human Services. They said that I should go talk to her older sister “confidentially” is what my friend said. I suppose just to get me some help. So her dad brought me and my friend there. I went in alone to talk to my friend’s older sister whom I’d met before. I was interviewed by a child protective worker. My mom was told. She said (in front of the worker) that she believed me “Dear, why didn’t you TELL me” as we both cried and I shook with fear. I love my mom dearly–she has NEVER abused me or my siblings in ANY way. But when we got home, she fell apart. She told me at one point “I don’t know what to believe. I have two younger kids to support. All I know is I feel like I will never be happy again…” That is a heavy burden for a young person! I shut down, the abuse continued. Ultimately I was old enough to move out and it stopped not long after that. But the damage done by not having support back then from the person that I most wanted support from, is healed ONLY by God. The damage runs deep!
    I THANK you (and I’m SURE your children are soooo THANKFUL–even if they don’t/can’t show it right now out of fear, confusion, sadness at losing the only daddy they know etc). YOU are definitely THEIR “saving Grace” –just as Christ is ALL of YOURS!
    God bless you and keep you dear lady and if I can be a listening ear, offer resources of support etc, please contact me!
    Lori D.

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  13. Grace —

    You have set your children’s lives FREE. You’ve opened dungeon doors.

    My prayers for God’s gracious, gentle, healing care and provision in your lives.

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  14. Dear Grace, I am so thankful that you have so many resources and so much support!! Over 60 years ago, at age 13 I told my mother about my father. Thank goodness she believed me!! There was not much known about the wide spread horror of child sexual abuse at that time. And therapy was a future concept some 30 years ahead. Fortunately, my mother was educated and able to support the 2 of us, but the shame and disgrace was something we carried for years. We individually struggled in our faith, but ultimately God upheld us and comforted us. I had no comprehension of the long term effects of the incest until the research about and testimonies of countless victims began to surface in the 80s and i began to understand how pervasive my defilement had been. At 13, I just wanted to be a normal girl and have the abuse stop, but he kept breaking his promise to me!! I am so glad that therapy done by licensed professionals will be available for you and your children. I so respect your determination to save your children God bless you!!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Nancyjane, thanks so much for sharing. You are right – – no one knew what to do with sex abuse years ago. Now if we can just get churches on board to know how to really help families like Grace’s! I think many are clueless.

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  16. Andrea, I’m so sorry to hear your story – – and that the well-being of your abuser was more important than you 😦 There are so many sad stories. Thanks for your encouraging note to Grace!

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  17. Thanks for sharing your experience, Persephone. That “fog” period must be so difficult because it’s not like you can press stop and go to “normalcy,” you have to wade through the fog for as long as it takes until some of it shifts and you can get a glimpse of clear sky.

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  18. Dear Grace, what a kind, honest face you have. What a ray of hope it must be to your children. God bless you for hearing and taking action. I am so sorry for the betrayal you and your children have experienced. I can only imagine the depth of the wound. I am thinking of what Corrie and Betsy Ten Boom said, “however deep of a pit you find yourself in, you find He is deeper still.” I pray that God will comfort and provide for you as he leads you through this dark place. Things will be better.

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  19. Grace, I just want to say that you are definitely doing the right thing! My father molested me when I was 8, then acted creepy around me through my teen years. I kept the abuse hidden for 8 years, then finally confessed it to my mom at 16. Their marriage had been rocky anyway, and I accepted that once I told, it would be over. Well…it wasn’t!! Despite believing me and him confirming the facts, mom chose to stay with him, and I lived in their house until I was 24. I was furious about it for years. I felt betrayed.

    The marriage finally ended a couple of years ago due to his repeated cheating.

    Getting your children’s abuser out of their lives and into jail is the healthiest thing you can do for them. They will thank you for it. You are an awesome warrior princess! Stay strong and be encouraged!

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  20. Grace, I am so very sorry for what has happened to your children and you. You trusted a man that was supposed to be a protector of your children, and he violated that trust in a horrific way. I’m glad to hear that you have found a safe place for you and your children to stay. Take one step at a time and don’t be hard on yourself. There will be times when you need to cry – even sob – with all your might. That is okay. Give time for your heart to heal. Lots of time. Even in this very dark season of your life, there is hope. Look into the eyes of your children and there you will see a glimmer of this hope. God’s blessings to you, Grace.

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  21. I could have written this. I am five years into this. My husband was arrested almost five years ago. IT is the hardest road. Ever. People blame you. You must have known. You must have covered it up. One by one people have turned away from us. I was left with seven children ages 15 months to 16 years. I have 8 total. Now I am down to only 5 ages 6 to 16.
    It is a brutal road. People condemn you if you are angry. They condemn you if you are angry enough.. the trauma it does to the kids is so awful.
    My story and my life has just gotten harder. FIve years into this and I have had to leave the church I went to. I lost the support of my parents, my husband’s familly, my 13 siblings.
    My family is a train wreck. And everytime I think it will come to some peace, we are hit by the next car.
    We are not widows. We don’t get social security. We don’t get social security. We went from stay at home mom’s. Now I am working. I cry every day. I have not had any financial support from our church or family. I don’t know how we’ve made it financially but we are God’s and he owns all of the riches in this world.
    Christians and family have been worst. I almost took my life many times.
    I had to file bankruptcy. I got into a car accident on the way to bankruptcy court. I am so sad to know where Grace is. I hope that all of you continue to support her. Because I’ve done it all alone… and it is only by the grace of God and through his blood here I stand.
    Oh dear Jesus. Please don’t let anyone else go through this. It’s not easy. It’s so hard. Yet you will NEVER leave or forsake us. Please carry Grace and her children. Carry my children and I. You will. I know you will. Keep our hearts soft toward you and give us forgiving hearts to those who hurt us. You know our needs. Protect us. Thank you for loving us and dying for us so we have hope.. oh Lord Jesus.. please help us. In your Holy Name we pray. AMEN.
    Please pray for my oldest son. He is mentally ill and sees demons everywhere. He is 21 and is in legal trouble.
    God’s Peace be multiplied upon you.
    Sarah.. Mom to 8 here and one in Heaven. Sister to Grace. Lost my husband due to porn and sexual sins.
    Oh and he got 12 to 35 years.

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  22. Oh and I forgot to add that I somehow make ends meet by working 20 hours a week on minimum wage. God will provide. I have to trust him because I sure can’t trust myself.

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  23. Pingback: Would your church be able to help someone in the midst of a crisis? How equipped are they? | Spiritual Sounding Board

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