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  • Writer's pictureAnnon

The Secret's Out and It Feels So Good

Re’ut was a girl who didn’t like to stand out. She avoided trouble at school and behaved like a typical teenager at home. She got on fine with other students, although she didn’t have any close friends. She always said that her best friend was her dog, Mitzi.

Her school felt that while everything seemed fine, Re’ut was not achieving her full potential. It seemed like something was holding her back, and she wasn’t fully connected to what was going on around her. Eventually, the guidance counselor suggested she join Kav L’Noar’s social and emotional learning group.

"I’ve carried this secret around with me for so many years. I feel physically lighter now that I’ve shared it. I wish I’d let go of it earlier."- Re'ut

Re’ut was a pleasant member of the group, joining in the discussions and sometimes helping smooth things over when someone else got upset. But in their one to one sessions, the therapist found it hard to connect on a deeper level with Re’ut. It really seemed like there was a block.

One day, the therapist asked a sensitive question in their private session, and was taken aback by Re’ut’s response. Re’ut whispered that some years back she had been molested, repeatedly, by a female babysitter.

Re’ut said that she’d loved this babysitter, and was always trying to get her attention, always making up some excuse to get close to her. She said what happened was her fault. She’d invited it. And afterward, she didn’t want to get the babysitter in trouble. And so she never mentioned it to anyone. It only stopped when Re’ut became old enough to stay home alone.

The therapist had a legal responsibility to report this information. She did this through a gentle and respectful process, first guiding Re’ut towards telling her parents herself, and then talking through the report that she as a therapist needed to send to the municipal social services department. At the same time, she helped Re’ut explore her complicated feelings about what had happened, and to help her feel less alone. It will take time for Re’ut to fully come to terms with what happened to her and to rebuild her sense of self. But she is truly grateful to the therapist for helping her take her first steps on this journey.

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