The story of an 8-year-old girl who was locked in a confined space for years is a horrific story, but one of many that go untold. Not only was the young girl emaciated when authorities discovered her, the other children in the house were instructed to lie about her existence. Prosecutors believe that she was imprisoned in a filthy, urine and feces contaminated closet. The girl’s mother and her stepfather face felony charges for their actions.
It is an unfortunate reality that many children like this may suffer in silence at the hands of abusers. Even more troubling, these abusers are trusted family members, teachers or clergy. Because of this, children may repress memories of these experiences as a coping mechanism, only to have them return later in life when they address other destructive behaviors such as alcoholism or eating disorders. But rediscovering these memories does not make them less valid.
In these situations, an experienced attorney and psychologist is an important resource in helping victims obtain justice and gain a normal life. An attorney with these qualifications can understand the shame and pain that abuse victims carry with them everyday. This knowledge can be very helpful when it comes to recalling painful memories and showing how important gaining closure is to one’s mental and physical health.
If you are dealing with emotional trauma from sexual or physical abuse you experienced as a child, it is okay to be apprehensive about going through the legal process or sharing your experiences. A trusted counselor can guide you through the process and manage your fears.