In horror, I stared at my 11-year-old daughter. With tears running down her rosy cheeks, she recounted the times and places my own father had molested her. I was ripped from my place of denial with an unmerciful vengeance. An unresolved war erupted inside of me. The little girl in me, who never faced her own issues, and the mother who was always overly protective, fought for freedom from reality.
The very thing I thought I had protected her from had happened. There are no words to describe the shock. My mind reeled. At 35 years old, I had never told a soul that I, too, was an incest survivor. I was totally convinced I would go to the grave with the “secret”. Now, because of my silence and denial, my own precious little girl, whom I thought I had protected with my life, had fallen victim to the very same thing I endured.
Dear God, how does one survive so much pain!
I honestly thought my heart would break; my whole foundation of belief shaken to the core. I had convinced myself that because I was a new creature in Christ I would never again have to deal with what happened to me as a child (between the ages of 7 and 12 years of age).
The memories were vivid, down to specific details, but until my daughter faced her own trauma, I felt nothing emotionally. As a young girl, I taught myself how to separate from my body when I couldn’t deal with the trauma. The real me floated on the ceiling playing with the butterflies while watching what was going on below. I would feel sorry for the little girl below, because she looked so sad. But I was just glad it wasn’t happening to me.
Interesting enough, I had been in ministry for years, teaching and praying for the needs of other women when the force of my own past hit me. I slowly realized that I, just like the women I ministered to, must begin the journey of walking through the pain of what happened to me to reach the shores of deliverance. I had no idea where the journey would take me.
Soul Murder. That’s what some call incest. A child’s soul, which is made up of the mind, will, and emotions totally shuts down when violated by an adult family member, an authority figure. The precious child’s spirit is covered by shame and confusion that affect her all the rest of her days, unless healed by the Lord—unless the strongholds are broken.
As a little girl, I thought there had been something wrong with me to make my dad do that to me; this mark remained intact as I grew into womanhood. I had no self-esteem. And now, because of my silence, it happened again, but to my own child.
“After all,” my attacker said when confronted, “you turned out so good; I thought it wouldn’t hurt her.” I was always warned I would destroy the family if I “told.” Thus, the power of my perpetrator was in the secret. Once I understood this, I became determined to not only expose this issue in the Christian community, but to make sure it never happened again in my family.
Incest and molestation is a curse that travels down through the generations of families. The only way this pattern or “curse” can be broken is through exposure and bringing the dark to light by breaking generational strongholds. The power of the secret has to be broken. Confronting and exposing was the hardest thing that I ever had to do. I felt wicked, having to make my mom look at the truth. It was horrible. But, through His voice, I found the strength to help change lives forever with the truth.
I released myself from the responsibility of protecting anyone with my secret. I was the victim. That is the day I became a ‘survivor.’ And that was the day the generational curse of incest was stopped in my family.
There is a satisfaction in constructively channeling my anger towards exposing the enemy by writing my story and journaling throughout the process. It brought a much-needed peace to the confusion that whirled in my mind.
Exposing the secret: That’s the beginning of healing and breaking the stronghold. It took much journaling over the years to make some sense of my life, and the most satisfying has been the composure of my entire journey into a book, “Climbing Out of the Box.”
With each stroke of the pen I felt His all-pervasive presence. His love encompassed me with a knowing I did not go through this in vain. I found His assurance that many will be touched and find hope that there is life after incest. The pain of it all fades into the past as His newness of life takes over.
Today I am a Life Purpose Coach. I get to assist the Holy Spirit in encouraging and exhorting people to find their gifts and callings. When others find healing and meaning from the past, they are able to step into a more fulfilling purpose in life. Sometimes that means coming to terms with the patterns that were created through childhood victimizations. Every woman is God’s precious daughter; He has a distinct plan for her life no matter what has happened to her. He intends a divine journey into completeness in Him.
Dixie Diamanti has been a Life Purpose Coach for 4 years, and a minister to women for over 30 years through bible studies, speaking, and writing. She is currently publishing her journey in her book, Climbing Out of the Box: From Religion to Relationship, a chapter at a time, on her blog at http://reflectionsofgracehome.wordpress.com/ . She lives on the Central Coast of California and has been married to Greg, who is a Pastor, for 12 years.