When Krista was only 7, her best friend was a 12-year-old named Jennifer. They bonded over Duran Duran and playing Skipbo. During one of their play dates at Krista's, Jennifer brought pornographic magazines she’d stolen from her mother’s stash. Soon after the girls began perusing the graphic pictures, Krista’s father came in. Jennifer, presumably overwhelmed with guilt, suffered an immediate nose bleed and attempted to hide the magazines in a dresser drawer. She begged Krista's father not to tell her parents.
Once the girls were alone again, however, Jennifer molested the 7-year-old.
Krista recounts her story:
“We had to be quiet and hide under the sheets and be still when anyone walked by in the hallway. The next and last time I saw Jennifer was when I was 16. It was about nine years later, and she stayed the night at our house. The next morning her nose was bleeding—this must have been the remembered guilt of what she had done to me years before.
It wasn't until I was twenty-four that someone realized something was wrong and then I blurted out what had happened to me. All those years, the abuse had not been on my mind, but my first time having sex brought out my partner's concern. He knew something wasn't right, although I'm not sure how he could tell. That same day, I phoned my mom and aunt to let them know. They were devastated. When I told my dad, he was upset as Jennifer was the daughter of his friend. No one ever knew until that point.
A few years ago, I learned that Jennifer died from cancer. But even before that, I had forgiven her. Although I was never told, I think she was a victim of sexual abuse too, and I know that she was emotionally, physically, and verbally abused by her mother because I witnessed it. So, it wasn't hard for me to forgive her at all for that reason and because I don't think she maliciously meant to harm me.
What was difficult to overcome, however, was my sexual encounters with men. I was fine with the actual act of intercourse, but foreplay always created issues for me as those places on my body were where she concentrated. Negative nasty thoughts filled my head whenever someone would touch or kiss me there. Even to this day, although it has much improved, I still struggle with detachment issues during foreplay. Although I do have female friends, I very rarely feel comfortable around more than one at a time.
The plus side is that I have always felt comfortable with men in terms of friendships and now, with my husband, sexually. My husband and I have been married for eleven years and he continues to bless me with his unconditional love. I just have to put all my energy into thinking good thoughts, that the acts are not "nasty" or wrong, but are blessed by God. I know that one day I will get there completely.”
Thank you Krista for sharing your story.
To learn more about Krista Wagner and her debut novel Intent click HERE.