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By: Chase Valley
Betrayal at Age Seven One incident in my life was so traumatic and disturbing that it haunts me to this day. I have not censored anything that I recall about this episode so reader discretion is advised. I have lived a very soap opera-like life. I have survived nearly every experience that is capable of destroying families. The main obstacle that I had to overcome, though, occurred when I was seven years old. I had come back from church with my aunt and uncle at about 11:00 p.m. Being tired, I brushed my teeth and went straight to bed. I woke up about two hours later and had to go to the bathroom. As I opened the door and started down the hall, I looked into the kitchen. To my surprise, I found my mother with her shirt unbuttoned and her breasts in a man’s mouth. It was even more traumatic to realize that the man who she was straddling was not my father. He was my uncle Jason, my father’s brother and best friend. This whole incident is blurred because I have tried to block it out of memory for such a long time now. I recall that I quietly turned around and went back to bed. I must have cried for hours that night, helplessly crying myself to sleep. My mother must have heard me because she came in to see what was the matter. I told her what I saw and asked her why, why she was doing that with my uncle. I’m not sure what she said, but I remember her telling me that it would never happen again. It was already too late--my childhood life was destroyed. My picture of the perfect American family was completely shattered. How does a seven year old boy handle such a situation? How does one respond to finding his father sleeping soundly in bed--probably having dreams of his wedding day—while his mother moans in ecstasy with her breasts in her brother-in-law’s mouth? The next day, I woke up and immediately attempted to block the horrible image from my mind. I tried as hard as possible to imagine my parents standing together and being happy. The sad part is that my father was under the same false impression. My father is the oldest male in a family of nineteen. He has three older sisters, six younger sisters, and seven younger brothers. His father had passed away when he was sixteen, so his mother asked him to drop out of high school. He was left with the responsibility of taking care of the family farm and raising his younger siblings. My dad’s brother, who is five years younger than my father, became his brother. He had a normal relationship with the rest of his siblings, but he treated Jason as he would have his own son. Since the day his father died, my dad had raised each and every brother and sister, even the older ones. He disciplined each and every one until they were old enough to get married and move off the farm. When my dad was 21, he married my mother, who already had two kids--my older brother and me. My mother had lived in California where she had met my “biological father”, but he treated her badly and abused my older brother. After becoming pregnant with me, my mother divorced him in order to prevent future abuse. She moved back to Kentucky and lived with her parents in Lawrence County, where I was born. My brother was three and I was eleven months old when my mother and my current father got married. The only man that I have ever known as a father, is the incredible man who is my father now. I consider him to be my only father. Even at the age of seven, I knew that I had to do everything necessary to keep my father from finding out about my mother’s affair. I knew if he were to find out, his world would be totally dilapidate. My father is a very delicate and caring man. He loved his brother with all his heart, so much that he let Jason move in
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Elizabeth Woolcock, Peter Cartwright
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