Todd Bridges' Darkest Days
Todd says the grooming process started early. The abuser bought Todd a bicycle and showered him with attention. "He started setting me up for things by telling me that girls were no good and that you could feel the same way with a girl that you could with a guy," Todd says.
Then, after the man gained Todd's trust and the trust of his parents, the molestation began. In his book, Killing Willis, Todd describes the first time. "'Pull your pants down,' he said. I didn't want to lose everything he had given me. And so I did. He put his mouth on me. I got hard. I didn't know where to look or how to feel. I squirmed against the back of the seat. He kept on going, getting into it. I hoped it would be over fast. Then it happened. I came. As confused and upset as I was, I liked the feeling," Todd writes. "I didn't think about whether it was wrong that a man had done that to me. I held on to the fact that it felt good."
It's been more than 30 years since that day, but Todd is still overcome with emotion when discussing his abuse. "I'm past it, but it still hurts," he says. "It ruined my life. I spent the rest of my time trying to cover up how I felt about it and that pain, and I hated it."