How to help a nonabusing parent
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  • If you had no idea that incest was occurring, you may be very surprised to hear what has happened.
  • You may have difficulty figuring out how to respond to your child or to the abuser.  

  • You may feel angry at the abuser for hurting your child.
  • If you weren't aware of the abuse, you may feel angry at your child for not telling you.
  • You might feel angry at your child for disclosing the abuse.  
  • You may feel sad for your child, for what this means to your family or for yourself because you need to deal with this situation.  
  • You might feel anxiety about responding the "right" way to your child.
  • You might feel anxiety about how this will impact your relationship with your child or the abuser.
  • You may worry that this has legal consequences for you. 
  • Depending on your family circumstances, you may be afraid that the abuser will find a way to harm you or your child.
  • If the abuser was responsible for supporting the family, you may be afraid of being on your own. 
There is no "wrong" way to feel. What is important is that you are able to support your child and help her through this situation without blaming her. Remember that abuse is never the victim's fault!

How to begin the healing process