These girls were raped and abused by one or several relatives (parents, brothers, cousings…), and yet it was them who were “violating the family honor“. Isn’t that twisted, huh?
Their stories are different but they also have much in common. All had four or five years when they were abused by a relative. The girls were silent under the pressure of threats, above all, for fear of violating family honor. And the risk that their families are to blame and were ging to be repudiated. Reporting the incident to the police was something that did not crossed their mind. Even now it is a step too radical.Rabea was abused by her father at an early age. She was traumatized and became unruly, “It’s unnatural. When you bully or on the street you go to your parents or teachers. But this is your father. Schemes are broken. I did not know how to describe it or to whom. I ran the risk of ending up in prostitution but luckily I got rid of it. Support from other people and faith in Jesus Christ finally gave me the strength. ”
Zohra kept his story for years. Relates that he was raped by her cousin in Morocco five years: “I was staying with my aunt and my cousin took care of me. Everything that happened that day is etched in my memory. I took everything I had. My aunt saw us. I was not allowed to tell my parents. She would have denied it. Nobody would believe me. I lost all trust. Sexual violence leaves a wound, but I’ve learned that it can also be healed.”
Kristina Aamand has heard similar stories. She works in an urgent care center for girls in Denmark, where there are many Muslim immigrants. ‘This occurs in alien and indigenous families. I never put the focus on Muslims. During my study I learned that there was nothing to learn about sexual abuse in Islamic countries because incest is forbidden by Islam, and therefore does not occur. A sample of great ingenuity. Taboos, secrets, silence and shame and a gated community is almost a recipe for abuse. ”
Ibtisam was abused almost daily by his brother between she was six and twelve. ‘If I would have told it, he would have said that it was my fault. I would be killed or expelled. I felt dirty, unhappy and rejected by my family and I felt very alone. I was a girl who had no life. Breathing, nothing else. “Abuse stopped a year after she threatened his brother to tell everything.
Sidon was the victim of several men, and still suffers the consequences. ‘From my four until my twenty years I have been abused by several people. They left me mentally and physically destroyed. I was scared. I still find it impossible to accept intimacy of men, I can not fall in love. I had no youth or normal puberty. “The doctor declared her mentally ill. A few years ago, Saida began working on a project and discovered that there were many other girls and young Muslim females who were abused and did not dare to tell their story.
… Zohra‘s stories, Rabea, Ibtisam and Sidon are not the only signs. There are others that suggest sexual abuse within Muslim families. Fier support center welcomes Friesland violence related to honor. They observed that half of young women who were received between 2008 and 2010 (45 of 86) had also been abused by a relative. These were usually girls of Moroccan or Turkish, but there were also young Iraqis, Afghan and Kurdish.
(Translated by T&P).