How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr. Mark Your Own Question
Dr. Mark
Dr. Mark, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5334
Experience:  Dr. Mark is a PhD in psychology in private practice
Type Your Mental Health Question Here...
Dr. Mark is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Would there be a benefit to confront a brother that molested

This answer was rated:

Would there be a benefit to confront a brother that molested me when I was around 6-7 yrs old? So far I have carried this dark secret with only a few people knowing about it. I am 67 yrs old now, and he is 75yrs old. Some how I feel that he has gotten off free for a bad thing he did and I have had to keep a secret and feel bad about myself all of my life.My mother never knew about the abuse. I was afraid to tell on him, afraid I would get in trouble and my family would not believe me anyway. I was afraid of my Dad, but not for that same reason. Thank you.

Hi! You know, to give you the best answer, I think I should ask you a few questions first that will help define the problem and the situation.

You have indeed carried this with you for a long time and have made a full life for yourself in spite of it.

Tell me, are you a religious person? If so, how do you see G-d's viewing this?

What is your relationship with your brother?

Does he have a family? Does your desire to confront him extend to making his misdeeds known throughout the family?

Any extra information that will help, feel free to share.

Let's go forward from the answers to these questions.

I'm going to be going into session with therapy clients soon, so if I can't answer before that, would later in the day or tomorrow be okay for me to respond?

Dr. Mark

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Actually I don't have a desire to confront him if it would not take away some of the uneasy feelings I deal with on a daily bases. He has a family, wife, grown children and grandchildren. I also have grown children and grandchildren. My relationship with my brother is OK, because I never have said anything to him. I think he might think I have forgotten about it, even though it happened several times. We never are alone, so I would never call him out about it in front of anyone else. --I am a Christain, I have a lot of faith in God and understand about devine forgiveness.

Thank you for the added information. It helps a lot. I believe I can now be of help with this issue.

First, let me say I can imagine how overwhelming this situation must be for you. Why do I say overwhelming?

Because you have lived a life full of many experiences and many relationships and many interactions. All to grow and learn from. All that add up together to be your life. And there is one set of events so many years in the past now, yet they still dominate in a way that no other experiences, relationships, hand interactions can come close to. Those events intrude into your sense of self more than their fare share.

And this is actually the key to my answer to you that you need to consider and think about. Your question to me really is: how can I perform emotional surgery on myself? I don't actually mind remembering the awfulness of what my brother did to me in the past. It's the residual effect on me that I need excised from my soul and my awareness. How can I surgically remove the molestation from my life?

And you are such a sensitive and faithful person, that right now you already have a sense of what the answer can only be:

We are not able to perform emotional surgery on ourselves. This is not how G-d built us. And so to confront him with the past will give you a moment of adrenaline and it will be exciting. But after the dust settles, the uneasy feelings you ALWAYS feel in life will be back as before. Why?

Because that is not the purpose of either the experiences of our lives nor of their emotional impact. The purpose of life is to grow, learn, develop, process, gain in awareness, grow some more, learn, develop some more. On and on. And it is not only the new events we are to process and learn and grow from. The new events interact with the old events, the new feelings with the old. And it is through bringing the old events into the present that we have the opportunity to learn and grow from them as we develop and mature. Those old events include the evil that was done to us.

I did not ask about G-d because I was concerned about forgiveness of any kind. I brought up G-d to know how you view growth and development in this world. Your journey needed to start with a sense of uneasiness in the world. And with that YOU would move toward goodness. And you have. He needed to start from a sense of snatching away goodness from the world and move toward goodness. From what you say we do not know if he has. We just don't know.

So let your ongoing discussions with G-d be your companion and guide in the opening up process throughout each day. Look for opportunities for goodness and opening up your heart. You have put yourself in those situations. You have dedicated your professional life to doing good for others. This is the testament to your essential goodness. The unease you feel is part of that. It is part of you and will continue to be.

This is the process you must go through with G-d in His world: to open in goodness what was closed in evil. I wish you the very best!

Please remember to click the green accept button. Feel free to continue the discussion; my goal is to get you the best answers possible. Bonuses are always appreciated! If I can be of further help with any issue, just put "for Dr. Mark" in the front of your new question, and I'll be the one to answer it. All the best, ***** *****

Dr. Mark and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you