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View Diary: Victims of Nun's Sex Abuse Need Our Compassion, Too (12 comments)

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  •  EXCELLENT DIARY (3+ / 0-)

    Sexual abuse by women is just as pernicious and scarring as sexual abuse by men. Our culture does everything it can to ignore it not only because so many more men than women commit sexual violence, but because of our Loving Mother myths.

    I have no statistics, only anecdotal statements by psychologists and clinical social workers who have treated me through the years, and the authors of books on surviving child sexual abuse, but apparently the myth of the Loving Mother is so powerful that police, social services, and judges almost cannot be convinced to remove children from a sexually abusive mother unless she manifests overt symptoms of psychosis. This is changing somewhat with time and education, but our most powerful cultural myths don't die without a fight.

    I was not raised with religion or extended family, and my family all but did not participate in school activities (except my brother, who was in the orchestra), so I only know what I've heard through the years from friends and acquaintances: the wreckage left behind by sexually, psychologically, and physically abusive nuns far outstrips that caused by priests. OTOH, I've heard almost as many stories of nuns whose enormous kindness, enlightenment, and generosity provided safe harbor and encouragement to kids who were being abused or ignored at home.

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