For The Sake Of Clarity - The Timeline



"It was a foolish parent-approved relationship which led to statutory rape, as was shown in the court." - @douglaswils

This is a recent tweet from Doug Wilson concerning the long-term sexual abuse I experienced as a young teenager. In light of the level of blame that is being placed on my parents, I feel that a timeline of the events might be helpful in offering some clarity for those that were not directly involved in the situation.

Summer 2000: I met Jamin at a local nursing home where a group of church members were singing hymns for the residents. He introduced himself to me. I was thirteen years old. He was 23.

A few weeks later: I sat at a local coffeehouse and Jamin showed up, sat down across the table from me and asked if I wanted to play cards. He flirted heavily and tossed pretzels into my mouth.

Fall 2000: Jamin came to our house for dinner along with a couple of his roommates, who were longtime friends of our family. He played footsie with me under the table. Our whole family thought he was a pretty great guy and began to consider him a genuine family friend.

Winter 2000:  Jamin was over for family dinner a second time and during a movie after dinner, when others had left the room for a moment, Jamin moved close to me, touched my cheek with his hand and told me I was beautiful.

Spring 2001: Jamin moved into our mansion on B Street and lived there along with 4-5 other boarders. At some point during this process Jamin expressed an interest in getting to know me. My parents discussed what they should do and ultimately my father told him he could wait around for me until I was older, if he wanted, and strictly forbade any development of a physical or romantic relationship. We were allowed to be friends. Two weeks later Jamin kissed me for the first time.

Spring 2001 - Summer/Fall 2002: Jamin began more serious abuse, this included sexual, physical, verbal and emotional abuse. He was wildly jealous of me, he spied on me, he gave me a strict set of rules to follow regarding my behavior, dress, and social life, he forced me to perform oral sex on him on a regular basis, he oiled the hinges of the doors in our home and frequently snuck into my room in the middle of the night, he limited when I was allowed to leave the house and where I was allowed to go (he did this by privately bullying me, as far as anyone else knew the decisions were my own), he demeaned me constantly and convinced me never to tell anyone about what was happening because he said they'd all know I was a slut and no one else would ever love me, he told me I should not go to college or develop any career or interests because I was to be his wife and the mother of his children someday and would have no need for continued education or a career path, he lectured me constantly on my flirtatious, sinful, tempting ways and convinced me I was an abhorrent girl with few redeemable qualities. I was literally a prisoner in my own home. (I should mention that I was behaving like a textbook abuse victim throughout all of this - I was infatuated, obsessed with my abuser, and the single most important thing in my life was to please him.) To maintain the facade Jamin would occasionally approach my parents and humbly ask their forgiveness for something like squeezing my hand to comfort me or patting my shoulder. He'd promise it would never happen again. This helped him to maintain trust with my parents so he could continue living in our home.

Fall 2002: My father began to notice Jamin behaving in a jealous way around me, and caught him spying on me from outside in the bushes during a dinner party one night (he did this often to monitor my interaction with other people). He was asked to move out.

Late Fall 2002: Jamin no longer lived with us but still occasionally stopped by to grab belongings he'd left, and during these brief visits would rendezvous with me in the basement or in a car for sex favors. One time, I stopped him on the front porch and quietly asked him if I was still a virgin because I didn't know if fisting constituted penetration. He laughed at me, then walked inside. This was one of the last times we ever spoke.

Winter 2002-Summer 2005: The abuse had finally ended and the effects began to set in. I experienced PTSD, nightmares, flashbacks, eating problems, difficulties with school, depression, insomnia, anger issues, stomach ulcers, social anxiety, and severe self loathing and shame. I graduated from high school during this and was attending the University of Idaho, my academic performance suffered, as did any friendships or relationships I had. The quality of my relationship with my parents was very poor as well.

Summer 2005: I told a friend a little about what had happened years earlier . She urged me to go to my parents or to the police and I told her she was crazy. Over the following month she approached me several times and begged me to tell someone else. She asked that I please do it before I turned 18 later that summer. Her words sank in over the weeks and one night I was overwhelmed with the need to say something, I nervously told my parents about the abuse. Knowing the police would be contacted, Jamin would be arrested, and a legal process would ensue, I was terrified but also hopeful that I could begin to find some peace as justice was carried out. The morning after I told my parents about the abuse they reported it to the police and Jamin was arrested on charges of sexual abuse of a child and lewd conduct with a minor.

Fall/Winter 2005: After an incredibly trying few months of legal proceedings, multiple police reports and intense health problems, I began slowly phasing out of attending Christ Church. The support and resources that I so desperately needed were not offered to me. The silence was deafening and succeeded in magnifying my shame and sadness. I remember sitting at church week after week and longing to feel loved and supported, aching for something or someone to help me soothe the deep sadness and despair I felt, and it never came. Not everyone at church was aware of what had happened to me and I knew that. In reality, probably only a handful of people were aware at this point, but surely a couple of the elder's wives must have known and if they didn't they certainly should have so that I could be ministered to. Sadly, it didn't happen. I didn't leave the church angry or bitter, I left wounded. This was the church I'd attended for most of my life and leaving was one of the hardest and saddest things I'd ever done. I've written about the rest of this here, so there's really no need to re-hash what's already been said.

My story is not about my parents. And though some people are trying awfully hard to make it about my parents and not about the criminal and what he got away with and how people stood behind him and trusted him and welcomed him back into their circles while a girl wasted away in sadness and shame, it's simply not plausible. The attempt to pin this on my parents isn't just morally wrong, it's based on twisted information. I may end up saying it a thousand times, but here it is again: I was not in a relationship with Jamin Wight. I was targeted by him, groomed by him, and abused by him for nearly 2 years, but I was not in a relationship with him. A relationship is something that happens between 2 consenting adults, not between a child and a man. 

My goal in sharing my story of abuse is not to point out my parent's naivety or to shame them for any foolishness they exhibited. We don't need to discuss how close bedrooms were or how many boarders lived in our giant home or how many times my parents urged Jamin to respect me and interrogated him to make sure he was doing so. I know beyond all doubt that my parents loved me dearly and were doing so in the best way that they knew how. They didn't have all the answers, but they did not wish for me to be hurt. 

My story is about the man who hurt me and the church who defended him. It's about him going on to hurt more innocent people because no one believed I was telling the whole truth. And within my story are parallels to countless other eerily similar stories that haven't been told because it's really hard to tell them, but they need to be heard anyhow so I'll give them a voice. 

That's all this has ever been about. I'm still waiting to be heard.

(note: I mistakenly wrote that I met Jamin in 2001 when, in fact, I met him in 2000 when I was 13 years old. I also stated that I told my parents about the abuse in Spring 2005. After reviewing the court records I realized I told them in August 2005. I have updated this post to reflect both of these corrections.)











Comments

  1. Dear Natalie,

    I don't know what to say without sounding like a weirdo, however, I'll risk it, I love you, I love that you are not standing down or shutting up. You are fierce & I believe you. I was abused, it started at 5 years old. I have been a fucking mess most of my life. I am 61 years old now, finally got real therapy in my late 40's after years of so called biblical counseling. You have touched my heart with your strength & grace. Thank-You, bless you.

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  2. Dear Natalie. You are brave. Keep speaking. Because that church needs to admit what they did. And because others need to know they will be heard.

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  3. This is typical grooming and sexual abuse behavior. You were targeted at the age of 13 by a MAN. Jamin was not a child, but you were. Nothing about this sounds consensual to me. And, I know that DW has more than implied that your father was greatly to blame... I don't see that at all here. I see a man who was exceedingly skilled in deception charming your father while abusing you. Nobody in your family is to blame. I do hope you know that.

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  4. Natalie, I am absolutely sickened by what was done to you, and by what Doug Wilson continues to try to do to you by equivocating on Jamin Wight's behalf. It blinds me with rage to know that there are people in this world who hang on Doug Wilson's words, as if he speaks for Christ. Doug Wilson is not a Christian, and he speaks for nothing but his own sick, depraved agenda. Stay strong. We all love you.

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  5. I'm reposting this for you from SSB:


    Scott

    September 27, 2015 @ 10:47 PM


    I’m wondering how old Natalie is today. In most states a child victim has until at least their 21st birthday to initiate legal action. In some states it’s longer. Natalie, if you have not spoken to an attorney yet I would suggest Gloria Allred of Allred, Maroko, Goldberg. They have offices on both coasts and litigate nationally. LA office 323-302-4773 & New York office 323-302-4773 Even if you have reached the age of majority you may have a malpractice case. Gloria is exactly the kind of attorney Doug Wilson needs to become intimately familiar with. Her office folks are top flight and would be happy to talk with you. Natalie, Please call them.


    Like






    Scott

    September 27, 2015 @ 10:55 PM


    Additionally Mr . Wilson’s continued discussion of you and the issues around your case, may have extended the statute of limitations on a malpractice case or created a whole new case ( harassment, witness intimidation, libel) . Please call Gloria’s office ASAP.

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  6. "It was a foolish parent-approved relationship which led to statutory rape, as was shown in the court." - @douglaswils

    Douglas Wilson, Presiding Minister of the CREC federation, wrote the above words. Mr Wilson also runs a college-NSA and seminary- Greyfirars. There is no housing, nor dormitories for any of those students and so he depends on the kindness and hospitality of a myriad of families in Moscow, Idaho to house these students:

    “Students are responsible for their own housing arrangements. For new students, Greyfriars’ Hall will pass along information about possible housing opportunities to those who contact the Hall and request it.” http://www.greyfriarshall.com/calling/

    “The College is a non-residential campus, meaning we provide no on-campus housing. Most students board with local Christian families or share apartments with other NSA students. The College expects its students to be mature enough to live independently. Students are responsible for their own housing arrangements. Costs for boarding with local…” http://www.nsa.edu/admissions/

    Of course Natalie’s family was willing to take in boarders. Natalie’s family was renowned for their generous open-house hospitality, kindness that four of my daughters enjoyed as a comfortable home- away-from-home. Young people knew they were always welcome and Natalie’s family was warm and inviting. Of course they would be willing to take in some of these students who Douglas Wilson needed housed for his schools.

    A sane person would imagine a problem might occur one day. A kind pastoral sort of man would of course protect and defend a family who had been abused by the system. Of course he would. Because an intelligent person would imagine eventual abuse of the system.

    Imagine a young girl finally brave enough to come forward with her story of abuse by a Greyfriar- a seminary student. Imagine being able to hold her, hug her and tell her you are there for her; you will be her advocate. Because a kind Christ-like pastor would do that and more.

    Douglas Wilson however, further abuses the girl and her family; he shames the family, threatens excommunication, threatens to deny the sacraments, threatens to reveal secrets, in short, acts like The Accuser. Satan. The “pastor” who is supposed to help and support instead uses, abuses further, and tears down the victim and her family. He spiritually abuses them.

    Spiritual abuse is the mistreatment of a person who is in need of help, support or greater spiritual empowerment, with the result of weakening, undermining or decreasing that person’s spiritual empowerment.

    Spiritual abuse- “The person in need is sent the message that they were less than spiritual… shame was used in an attempt to fend off legitimate questions.” Spiritual abuse comes from a place of power or perceived power. (The Subtle Power of Spiritual Abuse- Jeffrey VanVonderen)

    Ten years later this all reemerges, ten years later Douglas Wilson has the merciful chance to seek forgives, admit he was wrong and his response:

    Threaten Natalie’s family.
    Attack everywoman who (somehow) isn’t in agreement with his patriarchal system
    Reassure himself that just the men belong in the pulpit (or anywhere of authority)
    Make sure the CREC leadership (all men) remain silent and in agreement with him
    Get his “sister” church to write blog posts in Doug’s defense.
    Send out letters saying “Peace, peace” Even thought there is no peace
    (I could link to every one of these but it makes me want to throw up to read it again)

    But above all not repenting, not seeking forgiveness, not admitting wrong for one single honest sin.

    Instead,
    "It was a foolish parent-approved relationship which led to statutory rape, as was shown in the court." - @douglaswils

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  7. Dear Natalie, No one in his/her right mind believes that your parents or you are to blame for the crimes committed against you. Anyone who tries to place the blame anywhere but firmly on the perpetrator's shoulders should be ashamed. Mr. Wilson is harming his ministry and his witness by his repugnant words and attitude. Please keep on speaking the truth.

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  8. This is a comment I left at kbotkin's blog which had an article related to this article.

    +++++++++

    This story, and the articles surrounding it, has been so sad to read about. It is another mishandled pastoral situation that when brought into the public sphere has not caused any second thoughts, nor repentance, from the pastor who mishandled sexual abuse in his congregation.

    I find the information in this paragraph especially sickening.

    “Doug has been using the “proof” he claimed he had as a threat to shut Natalie up, and actually wrote her a letter in which he the first thing he asks is “Did your mom hurt you or wrong you in some way that makes you want to get back at her like this? Is there something we don’t know? Are you aware that my central reason for not talking publicly about all this has been to protect your mom from accusations of parental negligence?” k. botkin

    "Doug’s concern is for Natalie’s mother? Really? Why? Is it because she is still in his congregation? She stuck with Doug’s church instead of with her own husband. Why the hell isn’t Doug Wilson concerned, much more concerned, for the girl (now woman) who was abused by someone he supported? Again, Doug Wilson is only thinking about himself, not Natalie, and not possible future victims of Wight.

    With this revelation, it appears to me (feel free to tell me if I’m off here) that Doug was simply trying to USE Natalie’s love and concern for her own mother to *emotionally blackmail* her into not sharing her story publicly. Doug Wilson is continuing to abuse Natalie! He is vile. How he convinced Natalie’s mother to stay in his church and trust him is beyond me. He has been manipulating Natalie’s entire family." Me

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  9. "Make sure the CREC leadership (all men) remain silent and in agreement with him"

    I am curious as to why Mrs. Rice wrote "all men" in her comment above. What was she getting at?

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    Replies
    1. Well, as a male who is so very grateful that he is not a part of the Wilson cult, and who is beyond Wilson's "serrated edge", I'm speculating that, in a case involving an adult male repeatedly sexually assaulting an an under age girl, the determination of where the blame lies is left to a bunch of sycophantic males.

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    2. Hi Anonymous,
      'all men' refers to the fact that no women- all and only men serve in any position of leadership. I think that if there were, as a minimum, a few women in some postions of leadership, that perhaps the treatment of a young girl being abused, would be treated differently. I think that's why God created us male and female- to be a help to each other. When just the men weigh in you do not get the benefit of the other half of the chutch. It's stunted.

      Delete
  10. Dear Natalie, You are heard, dear one! The average person is very easy to fool, and you are right. Jamin met the criteria of a sexual molester. I am so sad that you were the one that had to suffer so that all of us affiliated with Christ Church could be educated on this critical issue. We hear your love for your parents in your words--your father, especially, pulled out all the stops after he became aware of the abuse, to protect you and others like you. Our grateful thanks.

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  11. No Longer Drinking the Kool-AidSeptember 29, 2015 at 12:49 PM

    Keep writing, Natalie. We are hearing you. Ready for the "empire" to fall.

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  12. Doug Wilson keeps saying you were 14 years old and much taller than Jamin. Doug is saying you actually had duped Jamin like you duped your parents??? Craziness

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  13. God uses the weak to shame the strong. If Doug Wilson's empire is finally brought crashing down, the main impetus will be your willingness and skill in speaking the truth.

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  14. Trying to be NeutralSeptember 30, 2015 at 2:11 PM

    There is a recent movie about a 15 year old girl whose first introduction to sex is the 30+ year old boyfriend of her mom, called Diary of Teenage Girl. It has been remarked in several of the reviews that portraying this situation unavoidably displays the agency (and many reviews comment on how unusual it is to see the sexual agency of a teenage girl on film, much less an exploited one) she possessed in the situation. One by Eliza Berman is representative.

    While I understand that for all legal purposes, there is no concept of consent that fits your situation. Wight's actions were criminal and sick and abusive. In that sense there was no relationship, but you do seem to describe a kind of agency along the way during this abuse. Can you comment on the nature of the agency you possessed?

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  15. Trying,
    If "Wight's actions were criminal and sick and abusive," why are you trying to be neutral?

    If Wight's actions were criminal and sick and abusive (and they were), do you think that Natalie received justice from the criminal justice system?
    Did Natalie deserve her pastor of many, many years to sit on her abuser's side of the courtroom after writing a letter to an officer downplaying the abuse by calling it a "relationship"??

    What does "agency" have to do with the situation other than minimizing the abuse that was endured?

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  16. Praying for you. And others.
    Thankful for you.
    Hurting for you.
    In your corner.

    ReplyDelete

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