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Monday, February 23, 2015

Her Father Sexually Abused Her Brother

Dear Bro Jo,

I have a difficult topic for you today.

I found out my brother, now 21, was molested by my dad.

I'm not sure when or how often because he refuses to talk about it at all but has come out and said it to my mom.

My parents divorced about ten years ago because he was abusive to her in several ways.

I guess my question is, how can me/my family help my brother deal with this and prepare for marriage?

He suffers from depression, anxiety, and paranoia, and trust issues, (especially with men), coupled with learning disabilities which make him even more insecure eventually leading him to come home early from his mission.

Does the Church have a program for this?

He knows he needs help but is ashamed to admit it and he's digressing.

All I want for him is to realize that he can have a more normal life as he's expressed often. I don't know if it matters, but our dad is still semi-active in our lives and is still fond of my brother especially and openly admits to us that he manipulates him.

He wrote to my brother and told him to come home from his mission.

Is there a way they can have any sort of normal relationship?

My dad is relentless. I'm sorry if this is off-topic, but I really didn't know who else to ask.


- Name Withheld

Dear NW,

My heart goes out to you and your family, especially your brother.

There is help available.

Your Bishop can direct all of you to appropriate counselling.

Talking personally to someone trained in dealing with these kinds of things is sometimes a critical part of the healing process.

Encouraging your brother to get the help he needs is the best thing you can do for him, and the best ways to do that is to be kind, be prayerful, and help him through love and understanding to know that this is not his fault, does not make him a bad person, and has not changed how much you care for him.

I personally think your dad is a cancer and like the dreaded disease needs to be cut out so the family body can heal.

If he hasn't been prosecuted, I think he needs to be.

- Bro Jo

PS:  Again, I would defer to an expert, but I don't think abused children should continue to have contact with the abuser. At all. At least not until they've learned how to cope with the trauma. I expect that takes a long time.

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