Abuse

Ask Dr. Dombeck
Ask Dr. Dombeck
Psychotherapy and Mental Health Questions

My adult child has accused my husband of sexually abusing her...

My grown daughter recently told me that my husband (her stepfather) had "tried to do things to her" while she was growing up and that she no longer wanted him in her life. She did not go into details and said she would respect whatever I chose to do. Initially I was not only shocked but furious at my husband but when I confronted him he seemed genuinely shocked too--and horrified that anything he might have done would have ever been perceived in that way. I've known this man for over 25 years and I feel like I know him and I want to believe him but I also saw the pain my daughter was in and believe her too. I have been frozen into inaction of any kind. This hangs over all of us. My daughter said she would respect my decisions but I can tell when we speak on the phone my not having left yet is like I am not supporting her. I feel like I need the details of this so I can understand what has happened and how I didn't know it was going on. She was a happy, smart, sociable, loving child and adult to both of us---no disorders--nothing. Now she says she has said it and is moving on. This terrible thing has just locked me in place and I don't know what to do next.

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