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Sexual Harassment by Step Father

Last updated: 23rd April 2023
Question ID: #8537
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Assalamualaikum to whomever is reading. My father passed on when I was 3 and my mom re-married my step father. He sexually assaulted me between the ages of 3-13 (2010) years old. I’m very ashamed to explain what he did but there was no penetration, only oral, skin to skin contact and touching. Regardless, it really hurts and scars me. I never really understood why but as a child I told myself that I had to hide this from other family members which caused me to not reach out for help. I never really felt angry about it until a few years ago, which is when I was fully aware of how wrong it was. I felt a lot of injustice against me. My step father became very close to my uncle (on my real dad’s side) and has made him to believe that I am a bad person. Also, I feel very upset and angry that he is able to live his life normally while I am still suffering from his actions. He is seen as very religious and kind to the people around us so any attempt of me trying to tell a close family member about my trauma was met with disbelief and no action, which I don’t blame because there is no manual on how to respond to a sexual assault claim. Also because the assault is in the past and not the present, it seems like there’s very little that I can do about it. My hope is to strengthen my relationship with Allah and to heal my heart. I was wondering if I have the right to expose him to get some justice for myself. However, I fear how it may affect my family. I have tried to forgive and forget for the sake of Allah but I’m too weak to do that. But if this is what I should do, I would like some advice on how I can forgive and forget for the sake of Allah. If you could also recommend some duas to heal my heart and give me the strength to forgive, I would greatly appreciate it.

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

الجواب حامداومصليا

Allah is Al Adil, The one who is Just and Al Muntaqim, The Retaliator or Avenger. Allah shall give you justice and avenge on your behalf. If he is not remorseful of his actions and has not sought your forgiveness then know that the punishment of Allah is severe.

Perpetrators will never escape from Allah whether in this world and the Hereafter. Allah has given us choice to seek justice or to forgive. This choice lies with the victim.

It is important for your mental health to get counselling, support from external services and from trusted family members to whom you can express your concerns and complaint.

Allah says,

وَمَن يَتَّقِ اللَّهَ يَجْعَل لَّهُ مَخْرَجًا

وَيَرْزُقْهُ مِنْ حَيْثُ لَا يَحْتَسِبُ ۚ وَمَن يَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَى اللَّهِ فَهُوَ حَسْبُهُ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ بَالِغُ أَمْرِهِ ۚ قَدْ جَعَلَ اللَّهُ لِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدْرًا

....."And whoever fears Allah - He will make for him a way out, And will provide for him from where he does not expect. And whoever relies upon Allah - then He is sufficient for him. Indeed, Allah will accomplish His purpose. Allah has already set for everything a [decreed] extent." (Surah Talaq 65:3)

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اسْتَعِينُوا بِالصَّبْرِ وَالصَّلَاةِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ مَعَ الصَّابِرِينَ

"O you who believe, seek help through patience and prayer. Surely, Allah is with those who are patient." (Surah Baqarah 2:153)

Read this Dua for peace of the heart:

اللهم أنت السلام ومنك السلام تباركت يا ذا الجلال والإكرام

“Oh Allah! You are Peace, from You comes Peace, Blessed are You, Oh owner of Majesty and Honour.”

Don’t give up on Allah have hope in Him. Make Dua to Allah to give you hope and peace.

May Allah grant you ease in this matter. Ameen.

And Allah knows best

16 Shawwal 1444/ 07 May 2023

Answer last updated on:
11th May 2023
Answered by:
Ulamaa ID 04
Location: London