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Text: In January, I learned that my teen daughter – who has an intellectual disability – was touched sexually by another teen with an intellectual disability. At that moment, I felt like the entire world had collapsed around my shoulders. 

The weeks since then have been a flurry of phone calls and meetings. I have worked hard to make sure that my shit – my history, my trauma, my fear & anxiety – stays my shit and doesn’t become her shit, when she seems to be processing, not traumatized, not immobilized by fear or anxiety. We are working to find her a therapist who can adapt to her disability. We are consulting with a sexual assault resource center. We’re making sure she feels safe, loved, and knows she’s not alone. 

I cannot shake my feelings of failure, though. I failed my daughter somehow, didn’t protect her, didn’t keep her safe. And I may never forgive myself. 

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