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Dr. Robert--

I have looked on the internet for the past few years for help and suddenly I came across you! I am unsure if you will receive this or even read this but I will continue to look at the site to see.

Today is Christmas day and my children are happily playing with their Christmas presents, my husband is playing pool with my youngest son and I can hear then laughing away.

I am a 39 year old women who has been depressed the last ten years, I did not have a happy childhood, my parents divorced when I was 7 years old this hurt me very much as I was "daddy's little girl" as my elder brother and younger sister were either my nan's or granddads or aunts favorite. Growing up with my mother and my step father was difficult, I was the middle child, my mother was an alcoholic as long as I can remember and the abuse was not nice, so much so she told me "I wish you had not been born." I can not ever imagine saying this to my own children as they are my life. I was sexually abused by two people in my family growing up in my teens.

Seventeen years ago when I was expecting my second child, a (few months pregnant) I was touched on my boobs by a girl aged twelve at the time she was massaging my back. She saw nothing of my breasts as I lay on my tummy. She started to massage my back but suddenly started to massage my breasts, this time in my life I thought not again! I lay there thinking what do I do shout, scream but I got up covering myself and told her calmly that what she had just done was very wrong.

My husband told her step father and a few months ago my husband also went to the police station and spoke with a police women about this, she said I had done nothing wrong as I thought I had done something wrong. and maybe it had been my fault. Why am I feeling guilty? Why am I depressed now seventeen years later ?

I have always loved children but now I'm afraid to be near any as I think about this girl that did this to me, my husband says I am being silly, and that I should not hide away from the world. He has noticed that I am depressed and I am worried our marriage may end, since he is tired of me being depressed and wants me just to be happy. We have had and do have a very happy marriage of 23 years.

I hope you read this and appreciate any answers you may have

A merry Christmas


Although your letter concentrates on the sexual guilt you feel for having been touched in a "forbidden spot," I think this misses the point. The most urgent problem here is not sexual guilt, but depression, which, as I have written elsewhere, can be a serious, even life-threatening disease, and which must be treated as soon as possible.

The depression you feel is not unexpected given your history of loss of family, plus emotional and sexual abuse, and all this can be helped with the proper treatment. Please get professional psychotherapeutic help as soon as possible.

Be well.

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