CNN Anchor Announces He Was Abused As A ChildSeptember 29, 2010 No Comments
If there is one topic that makes everyone uncomfortable it is the sexual abuse of children. We can watch shows where people painfully recover from drug abuse, read books about detailing the work of serial killers but bring up child abuse and the conversation just dies. No one even wants to think about it.
During a segment concerning Pastor Eddie Long, who has been accused of abusing teenage boys, Don Lemon said that the language the alleged victims was using sounded familiar and that he had suffered of similar abuse.
“I am going to tell you something, I have never admitted this on television, I am a victim of a paedophile when I was a kid — someone who was much older than me.”
Like many children he kept this a secret, not telling his mother until he was 30 years old.
“The things that these young men are talking about, men don’t want to, especially African American men, don’t want to talk about those things and don’t want to admit them, even if… they may make money off of it.”
Victims should speak out. It is estimated that up to 25% of girls and 15% of boys are abused as children. Because most of the creeps are friends or family members, most children keep quiet — convinced that they are the ones at fault or that they brought it on themselves.
Admitting to abuse is not an easy thing to do and Don Lemon should be commended for his bravery. It is only by being open and discussing it that society is able to grasp the enormity of the situation. One in 6 boys and one in four girls have been abused, compare that to the one in 18 that suffer from diabetes, a problem we hear about every day.
He is not the first television host to speak out. Oprah Winfrey has been very vocal about being abused from the age of 9 to 13, and the fact that she gave birth to a son in her teens. She has consistently used her celebrity to draw attention to what is, in fact, a very common issue.
Don showed us that you can be a well-adjusted, successful person who suffered abuse as a child. I want to say thanks, from one survivor to another.