My eldest cousin was the abuser.

Date uploaded: November 4, 2019

I am currently 26 years old, working full-time as a nurse, and getting ready to be married later on this year. 

I feel like I am in a place in my life where I am comfortable sharing my story. I was never traumatized by it, and I was fortunate to not have experienced PTSD, but it's always been in the back of my mind. At the same time, I was so young when it happened, I sometimes struggle with if it is something that needed to be addressed.

When I was two to three years old, I went to India for the first time with my parents and sister. We spent time with my cousins, who were living with my grandparents at the time. My eldest cousin was the abuser. He was around nine or ten years old. While all of the kids were playing, he took me by my hand and walked me to an empty room. I thought we were playing a game. He had me sit on the bed, locked the door, pulled down his pants, lifted my shirt, and climbed on top of me. Looking back, it was apparent that he did not understand the mechanisms of sex. He thrusted his genitals into my belly button. However, the intent was there. I was confused and somehow knew that what he was doing wasn't right. He acted like nothing out of the ordinary happened for the rest of the day, or even the rest of my life. He never touched me again.

The incident was one of my earliest memories. But again, I was two to three years old. I barely knew how to communicate. Who would take me seriously? So I kept it to myself. I forgot his name, but remembered his face. So when I saw his pictures in family albums, I remember asking my mom who the boy was. I remember feeling conflicted that this was my "cousin brother." But I never told my mom. I told three people in my life: my closest cousin, my fiancé, and my sister.

I told my closest cousin when I was 12, but she didn't seem to take me too seriously. I kept the information to myself until I was 24, when my fiancé admitted to me that he was molested by an older sister when he was growing up in India. I felt comfortable telling him, and he was so loving about it and grateful that we both found people we could confide in. We felt more assured that it wasn't by coincidence that God placed us in each other's lives. My sister was the last person I told. I was around 25 when I told her. She was angry at him, and said she always knew there was something off about him. The authorities were not called and nothing was done.

Honestly, I have no idea if he ever touched anyone else. If he did, I'd never know.

As a result, I feel like I was very curious about sex at a young age. One might say that I have a hyper sex drive. I've always wondered if it stemmed from this particular incident, being that I was involved in and saw things that a two- to three-year-old should not have been involved in.

I end my story here. At the end of the day, I know I have all the support I need, and I am satisfied with that fact.

*Please note, all photography here is stock and is not meant to portray the likeness of any victim. All efforts have been made to protect the privacy of those who bravely submit their stories.

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