How Do I Tell My Child?
Some say they don’t want to have to tell a child their father was a rapist. Well as a child conceived that way I can I’d rather be alive to hear that that to have been killed. That is no gift. So if you’re wondering what you will say while still pregnant well don’t worry it will come. Don’t think about things that aren’t necessary right now. We survive being told. It’s society that makes us feel bad anyways. Mothers are heroes and at the right time a person can understand that. One mom said, “I’d rather tell me child she was conceived in rape than to tell God why I sent the child back to Him.” Being told you were conceived that way is not the worst thing in the world. Really. So let’s take a look at some situations and what to say.
A child (5-6) asks a single mom why she doesn’t have a daddy. Mom can say that her daddy wasn’t safe. “He had some problems and it is safer if he is not near us. You’re a beautiful person and I love you. God created you in His image. He’ll be your Daddy.”
If you’re married and the child knows the man is not his/her father he can reassure that child that he loves him/her just the same. And give the same reason why the other guy is not in their life. As the child gets older (10+) they start to understand what could have happened. One twelve year old finally deciphered what mom was saying. She finally asked “were you mugged?” That was her way of asking. Tell the child as little as will satisfy them for their age. Don’t ever give details. That helps no one. Just give a general idea of what happened because there is no need to relive the experience or cause your child to mentally experience that either.
If the child feels like they are weird or different from everyone else get a mirror and ask them to look at themselves. Ask them if they look like a human. They’ll probably laugh. Ask if you look like a human. And jokingly say “be nice.” Then reassure them they really are no different and they have no “markings” that identify them as anything but human. You could pretend to be checking under their ears or arms. Make it easy for them.
If the child is a teen joking is inappropriate because they take life too seriously and will be offended thinking you just don’t care or understand. Reassure them that what happened to you has nothing to do with their value as a human. They are priceless. You can show them this website that has many stories of successful people conceived in rape. Email or call 281.451.8460 and find out about our FB group. We’ll connect you with other moms who have been there and not only survived but did a great job. You can too. And we may be able to connect your child with another child in the same situation. Finally this is coming into the light and people are talking. There is NO shame for the mom or the child.