The abuse ends, but the aftershocks go on
By Cheryl Lavin October 27, 2013 6:44PM
We first heard from Holly back in March.
When Holly married Justin, her daughter Chloe was 6, Jasmine was 3. “They loved him and he adored them. He was very attentive to them and very protective.”
Things seemed to be going well, but when Chloe was 18, she began to act out. One night she told Holly that Justin had been molesting her for two years. Jasmine said he would have tickle fights with her and “accidentally” touch her breasts.
Justin was arrested.
Said Holly, “My life has changed to the point where I no longer remember what happiness was.”
Holly wrote again in July.
“I would like to think that we’re doing as well as could be expected, but that’s not the case. In the beginning, we all actively attended therapy. Today, Jasmine and I still attend. Chloe refuses. She has moved out of my house and in with her biological father and stepmother. She keeps reminding me that I failed her her entire life. She holds a grudge against me for everything.
“I’m no longer the semi-organized person I was. I pay the bills and keep food in the house, but I can’t focus and have a hard time meeting deadlines. Things are hard and just when I think they can’t get any worse they do.
“I gave the family laptop to Chloe to take to college. She found several viruses on it that were ultimately tied to child pornography. Justin was arrested again. He’s been charged with three counts of criminal sexual assault and 14 counts of criminal sexual abuse.
“His entire extended family have turned their backs on us. We were members of that family for over 12 years. We loved them and now they don’t want to know us anymore.
“As I write this, all I have to my name is $3.20 in my checkbook and an ashtray full of change. My credit cards are maxed out. I have filed for divorce, but he’s contesting everything. I am beat, tired and don’t know how much more I can take.”
Holly is back with an update.
“There’s a pre-trial hearing on the molestation charges scheduled for November 26, 2013. The jury trial is January 6, 2014. My divorce should be final around December 15, 2014.
“Chloe is out-of-state at college. She was very lucky to have such a great college administrator who wanted her to attend their school. She awarded Chloe a small grant, worked with me to amend my student aid application, and gave her a campus job. I borrowed money from my brother and his wife to pay my portion.
“She’s doing very well academically although she’s having some panic and anxiety attacks and has called several times complaining of chest pains. She’s talking with the counselors at school and working her way through everything. She still has an incredibly short fuse with me and still sends me text messages of the worst kind.
“I’m trying to be better with her. I don’t send care packages every week because she complained that she didn’t like the random things I sent. I now send her something once every few weeks and try to be more thoughtful in my selections.”
Next: How are Jasmine and Holly doing?
Are you involved in a dragged-out lawsuit with a former partner? Send your tale, along with your questions, problems and rants, to firstname.lastname@example.org.