Sometimes toddlers are victimized by adults who seem trustworthy. With Yolanda*, the molestation started at age 2 at the hands of her mother's boyfriend who was an ex-cop and drug dealer. He scared her into silence with death threats against her mother and herself.
She was then enrolled in a daycare centre where most of the children were being abused. As she remembers, there was an operation in the basement where men were abusing children.
Yolanda remembers the "caregivers" taking the children to the diaper room and men would come in to abuse them.
After a lengthy stay at a children's hospital, doctors confirmed Yolanda had been molested. This would later explain why she would react by defecating and urinating as she approached the door of the daycare.
It has been a long road of psychotherapy that didn't help, struggles with addiction and familial ties.
“Molestation to me is the harshest crime,” Yolanda said. “You kill that child's spirit and the body still lives… I have no concept of healthy sexuality. That pain never goes away."
While she still feels she has more work to do in her healing journey, Yolanda finds healing in ceremony and connecting with her culture and heritage. She is now enrolled in college and is a very powerful, inspiring and courageous role model for youth everywhere, myself included.