Life Advice



Ask Amy: Molester in family should be outed to protect children

Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Blowing up the family will indeed happen if this gets out.


– Unsure

Dear Unsure: My thoughts are that someone (your parents, perhaps) could have – and should have – done more to protect the first generation of children who were victimized by your brother, after his initial conviction.

In addition to his (very light) sentence, he should have received therapeutic help, and he should not have had access to children.

But because this crime is so painful for your family to face, your brother didn’t get help, the news that he is a convicted child molester was swept under the carpet, and it seems that he went on to victimize more children, who now carry this burden with them.


Yes, his wife should be told, immediately.

The phrasing of your letter suggests that your brother has step-grandchildren. Their parents should also be notified of your brother’s conviction of child molestation and that it likely was not a “one-time thing.” He should not have any access to children without their parents present.

There is a public perception that a high percentage of child molesters reoffend, and while my reading about this suggests that the recidivism rate might be lower than most think – five credible accusations in one family means that your brother did continue to offend.

Dear Amy: My boyfriend and I have been together for over three years. After a year, we moved in together. I was buying a house and he would sell his house and move in with me and my two teenagers.


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