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Could you spot a potential abuser?

Updated: September 5, 2013 4:33PM



Dear Cheryl: I’m writing regarding Holly, the woman who wrote in saying her husband had molested her two daughters, his stepchildren. I would like to know if there was anything in their courtship or marriage that would have given away his true motivation. This could help other mothers with small children looking to remarry.

I’ve always wondered how a mother could not know something like this was happening. I have a young child, and I’m going through a divorce. I would kill myself if I got involved with a child molester. My intuition is pretty good, and I don’t think it could happen, but I wonder how these other mothers were duped.

COULD THIS HAPPEN TO ME?

Dear CTHTM? This is such a good question that I asked Holly, the molester’s ex-wife. Here’s her response:

Dear Cheryl, There was nothing in our courtship that would have led me to believe that he would molest my children. We had a whirlwind courtship and married rather quickly. He fawned over me and made me feel like I was the prettiest woman he had ever been with. When we would go somewhere, he would always hold my hand or have his arm around me. He was very protective of me. When we slept at night, I was in his arms, cuddled into him.

He never acted inappropriately with the girls. I had no idea he could be that sick. I didn’t see anything. He coached their baseball teams. He was their biggest cheerleader, always telling them “good job” when they needed a pick-me-up. He treated them well and always made an effort to include them in everything.

He helped them with their homework and helped get them going in the morning. He was actively involved in their lives. He would drive them to their friends’ house for parties or just to hang out. Whatever they were doing, he was there for them.

The only thing that stands out is that once my older daughter turned 16, he and I fought all the time about her. He kept saying that she was going to ruin our relationship and, that if I let her, she would drive us apart. He was the one driving us apart with his pettiness over her. He didn’t like her boyfriend; he didn’t like her independence; he wanted her home doing chores.

She refused to watch movies with us or sit on the couch and just hang out. She would eat dinner and go into her room for the night. I thought it was a stage she was going through. Little did I know that he was abusing her and that’s why she was acting out.

I never saw him watch porn, but now that it was found on our computer, I can trace it back to Sunday mornings. He would wake up at 5 a.m. and “mess” around on the computer for three hours. He would tell me he had to put in his fantasy football line up. Yeah, right!

TO RESPOND OR NOT TO RESPOND, THAT IS THE QUESTION is back. He and his long-distance girlfriend broke up. He was devastated and asked her not to contact him. She sent him a birthday email, asking him to respond.

I told him to delete the email, then delete it again so that it was permanently gone.

He says, “It took a lot of willpower, but I followed your advice.”

Got a problem? Or a question? Send it to cheryllavinrapp@gmail.com. Check out my new website askcheryl.net.

Creators Syndicate



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