Islamic marriage advice and family advice

Memories of being molested as a child

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Assalamoalaikum, I have never told my story to anyone. I am a 17 year old girl. All my life I have had difficulty talking to boys, and by this I mean for school purposes, even my teachers, I never really knew why, I always thought I was just shy. But recently, I began to notice that along with that I also have trouble trusting men, including my dad. I always feel insecure around men in general, as if everyone is watching me. I am extremely cautious about my clothing, and I always cover my body completely in loose cloths or an abaya. I don't really know if I was molested or not, but I have a memory.

I was about 8 years old and I was out one day shopping with my family for my clothing. I remember I was trying out some clothes and my parents weren't around. I remember this tall brown bearded man, who I think worked there, come up to me. He bent down to my level and told me that he would see if the shirt fit me or not. I did not know what was going on, I remember looking around for my parents but I couldn't see them. I clearly remember him bringing the shirt to my shoulders and then told me to hold it there. I was confused but I did what he told me, and then he started touching me. I remember him touching my private parts and running his hands over me. (believe me this extremely hard for me to write and I'm shaking and crying right now). I don't remember what happened after that but that one memory stuck with me for the rest of my life.

Even years after that incident I used to have crazy childish dreams of someone plucking feathers off a chicken and exposing it.

Whenever I walk on the streets I feel like everyone is talking about me, I feel exposed. I have trouble with my confidence, and I have tried to cut myself multiple times. I feel like I deserved the pain. I feel like I don't deserve to live, like Allah hates me. I know that my parents wouldn't believe me if I ever told them what happened, and even if they did they'll tell me to get over it. I have tried but nothing helps. This is ruining my life. I want to forget about it, and I want to grow up to be a doctor (inshallah), but I don't want to get married or anything. I'm scared of men or boys. I feel guilty for what happened, like I let it all happen and I didn't say anything to anyone for 10 years, but I'll be going to University next year and I dont want this to effect my life anymore.

Should I tell my mom? But its been so many years. How do I get rid of this? Jazakallah for all your help.

muslimah97

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7 Responses »

  1. This might be a great resource for you...

    http://www.islamiconlineuniversity.com/counseling/counsel.php#

    I am not sure about the cost, but you can pay online discreetly and your parents dont have to know...

    Also, check with your country- but there are usually sexual assault or mental health hotlines- a number you can call and talk to someone who may be able to help you professionally with this. Because this is a complicated issues and its hard to get over an experience like that.

    Hope this helps.

  2. Salaam Sister,

    I have been through the same. I know exactly how u feel. I was molested as a child too, and i was really depressed when i understood what i had been through, i was scared of men and my confidence was zero. i felt ugly, and felt like everyone hates me, and i don't deserve to be happy.
    But sister, its just the shaitaan who makes u feel that way. Trust me, u deserve to be happy, u R beautiful. Ur confidence should be on top. U should feel lucky that u r born as a muslimah and have ur faith.

    What happened to u in ur childhood is NOT ur fault. The person who did this evil act, will be punished insha'Allaah. I suggest u open up to someone u trust and tell them how sad u feel and what u been through, u won't believe how much it helps to talk about things like these, but only with people u trust. Maybe ur sister, or ur cousin.

    Also what would help u a lot is, if u pray everyday and after ur prayers in ur Duaa u can ask Allaah swt to help u. Open ur heart to Allaah swt, tell Him how hurt u have been, tell him how sad u r and ask Him for help, because sister in the end of the day He is our creator and the most powerful and merciful.

    U should also try to let go of ur past, and think bright of ur future, because one day u will look back and realize that u were feeling guilty for things that weren't even ur fault and u wasted ur youth being depressed. Im older than u, and i regret why i didn't enjoy my teenage years while i could. The older u get, the more responsibilities u'll have and life is not going to become easier, so u have to be strong insha'Allaah

    Also not all men r the same, there r many believing men who r good. So don't be judgmental to them. U should be positive about marriage too, not yet tho as u r very young. Once u find a believing guy who loves u from heart, then u'll understand the beauty of marriage that is a bond between a man and a woman. Cause Allaah swt has not created us to be alone.

    I hope my answer helped u, and if u have more questions, please do ask.

    May Allaah swt help u through this insha'Allaah Sister <3

    • Zohra: I know exactly how u feel. I was molested as a child too, and i was really depressed when i understood what i had been through, i was scared of men and my confidence was zero. i felt ugly, and felt like everyone hates me, and i don't deserve to be happy.

      Do you think all your problems were because you were molested as a child? What helped you change?

      • SVS,

        i think it had a big role n my problems, because i felt like i was dirty and it was my own fault that i was molested, but now that i am more mature i understand that it can't be my fault as i was only 6-7 years old.

        Hmm, i spoke to my close friend about it and she made me understand that it wasn't my fault. Praying and being close to Allaah swt helped me a lot.

        I just accepted my past the way it is, and i don't want to waste my time being upset about something that i can't change, that is also why i have chosen to forget what happened and stay strong with help of Allaah swt and enjoy my life insha'Allaah.

        Hope my answer was helpful 🙂

  3. sister i can feel how much you r depressed...but believe me sister Allah loves you alot He knows everything. as u say u were in ur childhood it means u were innocent, plz dont regret n no need to be ashamed on that.unintentionally it happened to u that was not ur fault. believe me dear Allah protectes u.. m not saying it was better but it could be worst... may be u cant think of that. u r too young..
    plz reject all evil thoughts as you mention.. u trying to cut or hurt ur self plz stop doing this.. you r creation of Allah plz dont hurt ur self..
    i can feel u are as pure as tears. m also crying to feel ur pain. plz read surah nisa in which Allah SWT says that He will not punish innocent people. Allah is with u, He loves u dont hurt urself.
    you dont need to disscuss your past to anyone bcz no one can do anything for that bcz it is past. let it go.. but plz trust ur parents n dad also. u say u feel unconfortable or insecure . try to trust ur dad n go close to him. he definately loves u. it would help u to behave confidently infront of men..
    first try to 'act' confident, no need to be shy. try to overcome ur fears. keep ur relationship strong to ur mom n dad. most importantly come close to Allah. stop crying.. plz focus on ur goals.. make good frends. n dont think about past.
    there is long life ahead.
    as you mention about bad disturbing dreams, these r just reflection of ur mental state. just wash ur bad memories n try to focus on ur goals, enjoy ur life. try to recite ayat alkursi before sleep.
    ur problem are bad memories, plz let them go n thank Allah that He has surely protect u from worst.
    thank Allah n repent infront of Him for ur evil thoughts. He is best friend, He loves you plz remember Allah n forget all.
    may Allah help u , protect u dear n may all ur wishes come true amen

  4. Assalam alaikum,

    I am sorry for the pain that you are experiencing. I understand.

    #1 Wearing Islamic clothing is good, of course, but you will not be able to move forward unless you work on how you feel inside. Your struggle is not just from the outside. You have to, absolutely have to without a doubt, understand that you are valuable. As harsh as it may sound, I think you need to hear this: it is insulting to our Creator if we do not value ourselves. Sister, you are valuable. The problem is, when you hear that, a little voice inside you, a little devilish whisper will tell you otherwise. You have to try to become "aware" to how shaitaan negatively impacts your psychology and fight it all the way. Begin with one good thought about yourself and drill it into your mind, until nothing can make it vanish.

    #2 I don't think there is a way to forget what happened to you. I wish I could tell you there is a way. I wish I could tell the secret in never remembering bad memories--but there isn't. However, you should drown out those awful memories with new good memories. Create better moments with your accomplishments, with you family, with spending time doing productive things, with the Quran. Indulge in remembering Allah swt and doing Dhikr. You can do this, think of it as training your brain in a new way. Whatever "prison" you have created for yourself is, ironically, something that only you can free yourself from. Start with one hour at a time, then one day at a time and all the little good thoughts will only move you forward, inn shaa Allah.

    #3 Get counselling. Take a class on communicating effectively. Do something that you aren't so comfortable with, BUT is good for you. When you feel the burden of your emotions strain you, let it be and stop fighting it. Sometimes we feel shy or uncomfortable. It's ok. Breathe through it and remained focus. You can't stop being afraid by snapping your fingers, BUT you can start practicing to live without fear. Pretending to have that confidence will lead to the real deal

    Again, most of the problems you have mentioned can be overcome with counselling and nurturing your soul. Just understand that you may have become the hurdle in your own way--we do that sometimes, I have done it to myself. Get the help you need and inn shaa Allah, you will benefit. May Allah ease your pain and help you through your difficulties, Ameen.

  5. OP: I remember looking around for my parents but I couldn't see them. I clearly remember him bringing the shirt to my shoulders and then told me to hold it there. I was confused but I did what he told me, and then he started touching me. I remember him touching my private parts and running his hands over me. (believe me this extremely hard for me to write and I'm shaking and crying right now). I don't remember what happened after that but that one memory stuck with me for the rest of my life.

    What else you remember about that day? What country were you living in at that time? Is it normal for kids to try on dresses in that country? Did your mom always leave you alone in the store when buying clothes?

    What do you remember about the guy who touched you? What was he wearing?

    For some reason, sound like you are extremely shy and fearful with low self esteem? Did you grew up in a home that did not provide loving atmosphere? Is your dad a very angry and controlling man?

    You can tell mom that you have this memory and see if she remembers anything about that.

    If you want to be a doctor, you need to get rid of your fears. Your fears are imaginary and not real.

    You should talk to a psychologist.

    What happened to you was not your fault.

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