At 345am on November 9, 2016, my alarm went off. I am retired but I volunteer work on Patient Safety and other healthcare issues. That morning I was headed to New Orleans to a conference on cost and quality. The night before, I had watched all that I could stomach of the presidential votes being counted on TV.
Mike, my husband confirmed it. Hillary had conceded to T.
Mike and I voted early. The tension and vitriol during this presidential campaign was causing both of us way too much stress. I just can’t stomach that much hatred and negativity. We already knew how we would vote and we thought that we could allay some tension if we took care of our voting business. NOPE, it didn’t work. TV coverage and constant horrifying and disgusting stuff surfaced every day. What was happening to my country?
About 10 years ago, a sexual predator, in the form of an uncle, scared a cousin of my granddaughter. He lured her into going for a ride with him in his shiny new truck. She had just turned 16 and had a newly printed drivers license. He directed her onto roads that she was unfamiliar with and then he began a sickening sexually explicit trash talk with her describing what he would like to do to her, and bragging about what he had done to other young girls. She was such an innocent that she didn’t understand half of what he described. She was scared, and lost. She didn’t know how to get back home, so she just kept driving. She was from a beautiful Christian family and on most occasions she didn’t go with boys unless she was chaperoned. This was her trusted uncle! One can only imagine her fear. She didn’t stop the truck and fortunately she eventually found her way home. He did not touch her and thank God for that. That uncle was my only grandchild’s other grandfather. And he lived in the same house as her. She was just 13 at the time. On the advice of police, her father (my son) and I worked to get him away from her. We did it to protect her and her young friends from a sexual predator. That was the beginning of the end of our relationship with my granddaughter. Her loyalty was to her “other” side, including the sexual predator grandfather. We had cared for our sweet girl for many years in our home. She spent entire summers here and most holidays. She had her own room and things here. We love her deeply. And now she barely speaks to us. We haven’t seen her for over 7 years. She is now 24 years old. We were not invited to any events in her life, like her high school graduation with honors or her college graduation. She has shared one photo of herself in all those years. I have books full of them from our time with her.
When a family gets behind a sexual predator and dives into denial, it is impossible to penetrate that. The disgusting perpetrator we knew 10 years ago has a “devout Catholic” wife who immediately took him to her priest. He lied to the priest, after telling the police the truth. The small minded wife stuck by him and defended him. She told her daughters and son and their families “we will never speak of this again”. Her doe eyed denial saved face, but destroyed very close and loving relationships all through her very large extended family, and it separated my family from our beloved girl.
There is great impenetrable strength in denial and undeserved loyalty.
This example of my painful separation from my sweet granddaughter is a microcosm of the vast harm a disgusting small man with those sickening tendencies can bring to those around him. When they get away with their appalling behavior repeatedly, over many years, it empowers them to be even more disgusting. I have never written about this part of my life before. It is very painful and something that I have not shared with a lot of people, but it is true, it is my reality and it is time for me to share it.
Almost 50% of American voters got behind a sexual predator for president and now he is going to live in the White House. That is a huge portion of our citizens that turned a blind eye to his predatory behavior, that was confirmed by his own words, a number of women,and even by prior wives. I can only imagine what kind of harm he can do to all of us, when a single creepy sexual predator uncle/grandfather could wreak such havoc in his own family and as a result, in mine. Even before his election, T has left a path of destroyed lives and emotionally battered women.
I am horrified over this election and I will grieve it until T is finished.
God help us all.