Ask Amy: Cousin feels violated over childhood abuse
Dear Amy: When I was a child, my female cousin, who is three years older than me, engaged me in sexual games/role-playing that I now realize were not at all age-appropriate.
She swore me to secrecy and praised me for being such a good cousin for keeping our secret. This abuse went on for almost three years.
We are now in our 30s, and when I raised the issue of the child sexual abuse with her, she denied it ever happened.
She asked me why I hate her that much, and why am I making this up?
She accused me of fracturing the family with my allegations.
I told a few family members, including her parents, and now I've been vilified, because no one believes me.
I have discussed this with my therapist, who advised me that people will not want to face the ugly truth about my cousin, so I will probably never be vindicated.
I reached out to my cousin and suggested that we have an in-person conversation to clear the air, and a follow-up with family members, but she has ignored my request.
Any advice for me so I can move forward?
I feel like I've been victimized twice – once with the sexual abuse, and then with the denial and lies.