I was taking a couple girls home from the after school program yesterday, ages 14 and 15, they started talking to each other about the movie Precious.

"...but no, she didn't scream or anything, she just laid there so that aint rape!" I hear one girl say to the other. I immediately started to explain to her that if your father has sex with you, it's rape and it's incest. Fathers are supposed to protect you from that kind of stuff not do it to you.

But she continued "miss Carole, wait, but she was just takin it and her mom was like right there in the door way, she could have screamed or something"

I answered "But her mom also could have protected her daughter, like you said, she was standing there in the door way watching her boyfriend have sex with his own daughter...remember the mother told the social worker that her husband had been having sex with their daughter since she was three! None of that was Precious's fault. It was all her parents fault and it was rape."

I was so haunted by that conversation. It broke my heart especially because the other girl in this conversation had been rapped by her mothers boyfriend not too long ago. She had been removed from the home but then returned after the mother got rid of the boyfriend. But NOTHING about that home life is good, normal or even close to right even still.

After that conversation I knew I had to do more.I first asked Nathan, the after school program director, if I could speak to the girls about what constitutes Rape and Incest. Then I called the local Rape crisis center to get some fliers and informaiton for my presentation and I found out that they will gladly come talk to the group for free! They will tailor the presentaiton to fit the awareness needs for our group, have me on hand to answer questions and have plenty of written information for the kids to take home.

See, the after school program is an abstinence program, but it's hard to tell a girl not to have sex before marriage if she thinks it's her fault that her dad had sex with her. Or her brother, cousin or friend of the family.  I think all the prostitutes I know were once sexually abused by a family member.

The boys also need to understand what rape is.

The representative from the rape crisis center said misconceptions of what rape is are still very prevalent.

I have a friend who is my age and when she was 12 she was date raped.At the time there was not a term for "date rape" She was hanging around a lot with a much older boy from the neighborhood. He was 18. He told her that even though she was only 12, having sex with him was just what you did if you wanted to be boyfriend and girlfriend. So one night in a pool, he took what he wanted, even though she was telling him no, with other kids from the neighborhood looking on.This messed her up for a very long time. Especially because she felt it was her fault.

She didn't realize what had happened to her until her mid 20's when she read the definition of "date rape".

I'm praying that these girls will come away from this knowing what is incest, what is rape, and what to do to get away from it in their homes. I am thankful for the movie Precious, it has started a much needed conversation.


Ms. Stewart said…
I was talking with my 12yr old student just yesterday, and had a despairingly similar conversation with her. She was obviously being weighed down by something severe, so I pulled her aside during our after school program, and found out that someone had attempted to rape her outside of her home the night before. Unfortunately, I was already aware that she had previously been raped by her older brother's friend, resulting in her now almost two year old son's birth.
When I talked to her about the whole situation, she seemed to be in a state of denial mixed with depression. I asked if she wanted to talk with one of our counselors and she said no, she was fine. I got on her level, told her that just because it had happened to her before, it didn't make this time any easier to deal with, or less painful, and she simply broke down in tears. She doesn't know anything different, and expects this as just a part of her life.
Let me know when the Rape Crisis Center is coming to talk and I will honestly try to get her down there. You're doing fantastic work, Carole
~Stacy S.
Chantelle said…
powerful stuff

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