Reply To: They’re killing sex offenders

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Robin
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Mother, I approved your comment so that I could ask–no, beg–something of you. First, I do understand how you feel. I have three relatives in three different generations who were childhood victims of sexual assault. I too became involved in this through research aimed at helping me understand it better. After almost seven years, I have learned so much, and I continue to learn.

You cannot possibly know that the person you answered nor any other person has not accepted responsibility for the harm caused. Accepting that responsibility does not mean accepting a lifetime of impossibility of showing one has changed and deserves a second chance.

What I want to beg of you is not to make your daughter a permanent victim. I am in no way belittling her pain and what was done to her, but if you, by your words or your actions, send the message to her that she will suffer the rest of her life due to it and that she will never recover, and that she is ruined beyond repair, you will have harmed her more than the original act did. When a child has a critical psychical illness, do we say to the child, “Well, you’ll die from this; just give up now”? Of course not; we assure the child she will get well, she will be just fine. We give her hope. Why should this be different?

A great many people in our advocacy are former victims or have children who are former victims. We know that the continued persecution of those who are former offenders does absolutely nothing for public safety and has no effect on stopping child sexual abuse. We chose and choose every day to do what will make a positive difference. Any other choice is a selfish desire for revenge, and your last sentence shows you are going in that direction.

Please help your child recover…meaningful therapy that focuses on recovering and moving on; support from you that this will not define her life. Please. And blessings and peace to you both.