Story Thirty Nine: Deema from Saudi Arabia

I lie to myself and say that I got over it.

Maybe I did get over the fact that my own uncle molested me repeatedly starting at age 17.. .

I got over the psychological damage after years of difficulties relating to all men and my own sexuality. I did perhaps get over it to a point where I can now relate to men in my life with no hostility.

But what I am still struggling with is how my mother reacted when I finally gathered the courage to tell her. After 11 months of non stop violations of my body, sleepless nights and suicidal thoughts,  after feeling like dirt thinking it was my fault, after realizing it was not a passing phase and won’t stop on its own, I finally decided to do what was even scarier, tell my mother that her brother is molesting me.

“I am sorry mom, but I will never forgive you. I will never be able to forgive what you did to me… Because the damage you caused cannot be repaired… If I had lost faith in men because of him, I lost faith in everything because of YOU!”

I had the impression that I was fighting a world of nasty men who viewed me as an object. But that day you showed me that even you, saw me as no more than a product with the sole purpose of being sold to the highest bidder.

Mom, you know what I am talking about. Do I need to remind you of the time when I came to you crying, choking with my own words, terrified of how you will receive the news that your own brother is a monster, one who repeatedly used your daughter for his sexual gratification? do you remember you cried with me? I felt good when you cried, I cried more, I finally let it out. I thought to myself that you understood against all odds, and you were hurt for me…

But it was only 30 seconds later that you asked me the most horrible question: “did he leave you intact (virgin)?”

Stunned, I couldn’t answer… You interrupted the first moment of relief I had in 11 months to ask me the ugliest question that was ever asked. You asked me again…
“yes”, I puked that answer out in disgust… And I saw your tears dry up instantly. You stood up and said that you needed to go to bed and that was the extent of your consolation.

Do you know that this moment defined our relationship once and for all? A seller and a product, that’s what we were and that’s what I learned that day. My feelings and dignity were secondary. All you wanted to know was whether the scratches and the bruises were invisible enough so they won’t affect my value.

And then you concluded the conversation by saying “I will not tell your father, he will kill him if he knew”…
Thanks for that too…Although it should really have been the abusers’ argument to shut me up, not my own mother! And thank you for making it sound like you were doing me a favor.

The next time you referred to that incident was three weeks later. When you lied to me and said you had spoken to my uncle and told him never to show his face again or else you’ll get him arrested. I know you lied mom. I know you never confronted him. Because there he was, few months later, making advances on me again, with the face of a criminal who’s proud of never being caught.

And am still fighting him on my own, wishing I had never told you… Because all you do now is scrutinize me every time he is around, as if you want to catch me guilty of seducing him… How can I ever forgive you?


Comments (14)

  • me

    Hi Deema… pls dont feel like its your fault in anyway… it is your mum and uncle that are guilty and fillthy and horrible… I hope that they suffer the torment that they have placed on you …

  • Kirsten

    Dear Deema,

    I am so sorry for you! This is a terrible thing that you are facing and all on you own. Sadly this happens a lot to woman everywhere.

    Please take good care of yourself! Stand up for yourself and for your own daughter(s) in the future. Your mom is lost for our cause, she has sercombe to being a helpless victim. She has probably learned in het whole life that she is not in charge of het own faith, own will, and own sexuality and has very very little self-esteem because of that. And eventually try to forgive your mom. By rescuing yourself your will also rescue your mom! Please never ever become like her.

    I am sending you all my love and strength and will be thinking of you!

    Kirsten ( Holland)

  • Heyyy at the other Heyyy

    So, Deema, the tale is incomplete – and forgive my ignorance, but why didn’t you tell your father?
    And yes, that is quite a seductive picture. – If it is yours.

    None of us, nobody, has the right to walk through life wearing our scars like medals or definitions. Abuse needs to be peeled off, discarded and left by the pathside. Memory is plastic, and the old stuff first fades then gets buried by the new stuff and its up to us to ensure that the new contains compassion, beauty, tenderness and laughter.

    We don’t forget, but we learn to pity, we build distance. We live beyond. LIVE, that is.

  • Haneen Ayman

    That’s, for sure, is one of the hardest things I’ve ever read in my whole life. I’ve been molested and sexually harassed many times. I can totally understand that what hurts more was your mom reaction to it. I’m almost 21 years old and I never told my mom about anytime I got sexually harassed because the first time it ever happened to me I told her and she told me “It’s because of the way you were walking down the street, the way you filthily move your body with no shyness” Agony, that’s all I felt and from that moment, I never told her whenever I got molested and I never will. I know how you feel like, I wish I could do something to help, please tell your dad. Maybe he’s make a difference.

  • fatima zahra

    Realy deeply tauched that terribly sick hurt me honney !! but thumbs up for your courage am sorry for your Mome she coudn’t stand with you in such as a terrible sitaution she is still living under the patrichal truditons and damn on your canibal uncle he is whitout feeling . Am realy sorry for what happend to you keep on and stand for your right and verginity is nothing ur emotion is the first thing thumbs uup on you again Peace and Love Faty from Morroco

  • Birgit Stare

    Extremly hard to understand for me as a swedish woman and mother. If it were my daughter my brother wouldn´t have a hole bone in his body.

  • Arlene

    oh gosh. What a horrible way to be treated. I’m so sorry.

  • Commandant BOD

    Fucksake : what a nightmare life must be for you…

  • Inas

    Deema I am so deeply touched with your sad and shocking story. I admire you for your courage. Yet, I can’t imagine how painful to be around such a monster and your mom allows it. Where is her protictive mother instinct. I will kill anyone who would try to harm my kids. Your mom’s response and handling the situation is really absurd. I believe she is very vulnarable. Might be you have to face him in front of her so that he will get lost god damn such a disgusting animal.

  • Marguerite Hall

    You are so brave to speak out. You are a beautiful and smart woman who is dealing with so much pain and an issue that is unfortunately widespread. You are helping other women heal by speaking out. Know that your sisters around the world support you. We hear you and send you our love and prayers.
    Peace and love Marguerite.

  • Shumaila

    How can a mom be like this

  • Areen

    That’s really horrible, but notice you girls that this doesn’t only happen in Arab countries but around the whole world and it usually worse than that. So,
    Dear Deema,
    Have faith in yourself, start fighting him by not showing up when he is around, and if didn’t work , just call the “amr bl m3rrof” because they stalk such people, and always look for what makes Allah satisfied, and He’ll always be around for you, you’ll not be harmed.


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