Barbie Perkins-Cooper, Author

Living Life in the Country As A Writer, Photographer


Dearest Readers:

This news really annoyed me today. Bill Cosby to be released from prison today. What? This isn’t justice. How can they do this? Don’t people understand what a victim suffers? The fight. The dignity. The shame. A victim never forgets those hands and the body moving all over her as the culprit has his way with the victim? As a victim of sexual molestation when I was 15, I admired those women who came forward as “ME TOO.” Now, my heart breaks for the women who came forward to tell their stories, hoping he would be prosecuted, convicted — only to be released from prison today. This is not justice.

⁠When someone is sexually molested, she is left to feel dirty. Thoughts of what did I do for him to touch me? Why? Why Me? After my grandpa’s brother molested me I asked these questions to myself for over 20 years. I told no one!

YES. WHY ME?

I still remember my uncle. I will never forget what I experienced as his filthy, wrinkled, dirty and dry hands rushed over my body. I was a virgin. No one in my family had ever discussed sex with me. I was innocent. I had no idea men would do this to a young girl. I imagine some people would say I instigated him, after all, I had really pretty dancer legs and a nice chest. I wore shorts and a T-shirt. Yes, I wore shorts. Bermuda shorts, not the Daisy Duke style that showed my ‘sweet cheeks.’ My T-shirt wasn’t tight. Besides, if I was riding with my uncle in his delivery truck, I was safe!

Or, was I?

During the molestation, I fought back. I balled my fist. I screamed. I looked around, hoping someone would hear me and rescue me. My uncle drove to a red clay dirt road. He parked his delivery truck. He took his hands off the steering wheel, smiling a wicked smile at me. Placing his right hand on my thigh, he motioned for me to move closer.

“What are you doing? I thought you were making deliveries in Smiths Station today. You said I could help you.”

“And you’re going to help me today,” he laughed. He moved both hands higher, crawling up my chest. I grabbed his hands.

He jumped over to my side of the truck. “I want to get to know you better. You’re so pretty. You’ve probably got lots of boyfriends. Let me teach you what a real man can do to you!”

I screamed. Balling my fist, I swung at him, hitting him right where I needed to so he would stop touching me. I grabbed the door of the truck, opened it and I jumped, running as fast as I could to get away from him. I glanced back to see if he was coming after me. The truck was still stopped, so I rushed into a thin forest area of tall pine trees. The dust from the road caused me to have shallow breathing, so I hovered down, hoping he would leave and not find me. Smiths Station was only a ten-mile-walk. My legs would get me home.

Moments later, I heard the truck. I rushed into thicker forest hoping he would not find me before I made it to the busy highway. He gunned the engine of the truck. I burst into tears, horrified he might kill me.

Suddenly his truck moved towards me.

“You get here in this truck. I’ll take you home.”

“No. I’m not getting in the truck and you are not taking me home.”

He stopped the truck and rushed towards me. His hands grabbed me again. I screamed a chilling sound, hoping someone would hear me.

“Leave me alone. Don’t touch me. Don’t you ever touch me again!”

He pushed me towards his truck, opening the door, telling me to get inside.

“No,” I cried. Tears pouring down my face. “I’m walking home.”

“No, you ain’t. If you walk home, someone might see you. I’m a deacon in the church. If you say something, no one will ever believe you. Besides, all I did was touch you, feel you up a bit, just to see what you had.”

“You’re really a pervert, aren’t you?”

“I’m driving you home. Tell your mama we finished early. Don’t you tell her or anyone. You hear me? Don’t tell anyone I wanted to get to know you better.”

I never spoke to my uncle again. In church, when he looked at me, I turned away. At a family reunion I refused to speak to him or hug him. My mother wanted to know why.

“I have my reasons,” I said. A few minutes later, I left. I did not want to even look his way. When he died, my mother phoned me, wanting me to come to his funeral.

“He can burn in Hell,” I said, “That bastard tried to rape me. If I send flowers, I’ll send black, dead roses. That’s all he deserves! I will not come to the funeral.”

I find it strange, today that I am remembering when my uncle molested me. Believe me when I say, a victim of sexual molestation NEVER FORGETS. At times, it is like a continuous loop video playing over and over, in nightmares or when something triggers the memory, like today when a sexual pervert walks free – just like my grandpa’s brother did.

Bastards!

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