Sunday, June 7, 2015

The moments my heart stopped: Jill and Jessa's Interviews

Jill and Jessa's interview with Megyn Kelly terrified me. 

The talking points were creepy as hell - and nearly identical to the Duggar parents talking points.
  • Being molested isn't so bad because we didn't even know what happened until our parents told us!
  • We found out about the molestation about 30 seconds before Josh left for Little Rock. 
  • Our parents are awesome! 
What scared me more were some of the outright lies that Jill and Jessa have internalized:

Internalization One: Josh didn't molest us.

Jessa: " But I do want to speak up in his defense against people who are calling him a child molester or a pedophile or a rapist some people are saying. That is so overboard and a lie really. I mean, people will get mad at me for saying that but I'm like I can say this. You know? I was one of the victims, so I can speak out and I can say this and set the record straight here."

Reality Check: Josh molested you.  Josh molested Jill.  Josh molested two of your sisters and a babysitter.  He's a child molester.

Internalization Two: All the victims were unconscious which makes it not so bad.
Jill: We didn't even know about it until he went and confessed it to my parents and they shared it with us.
KELLY: Neither of you knew?
Jessa: None of the victims were aware of what happened until Joshua confessed.
Jill: It wasn't like we were keeping secret afraid or something.

Reality Check: One of the two of you saw the time Josh molested a sibling in the laundry room according to your police report.  You may not have known prior to March 2002 but by March 2003, at least one of you was aware that he was still molesting your siblings.  But, since your parents never got you counseling (according to their interview), I can see why this script is much, much safer for both of you.

Internalization Three  Other people have been abused so much worse.KELLY: You had no memory of it?
Jessa: I didn't know. I didn't understand, okay, this is what's happened until my parents told me. And so I think at that point it was just kind of like, it's like, you never think like this will happen to me or something.
Jill: Yes. And in our case, you know, it's very mild compared to what happened to some.
Jessa: I know so many girls --

[From later]
Jill: And I feel for the other families out there. I mean, statistics say two-thirds of families deal with something like that and that's only the families who are reporting it.

Reality Check: 
*I stopped cold here*

Why do the Duggar family know so many families where sexual abuse occurs? 

  Why is being molested by your brother "mild"?  It's not mild. Again, the script is more comforting than the truth.

The statistic is something like 67% of people know of someone who has been sexually abused at some point during their life.  That's not the same as 67% of families having abuse in them.  Not even close.

Internalization Four:  The year between March 2002-March 2003 never happened.
Kelly: So, you had the family meeting. Did Josh go away right after that?
Jessa: He did pretty soon. At the time I was young so it kind of seems like everything was a whirlwind or whatever.
KELLY: Was there time that you were in house with Josh knowing this prior to him going away?
Jessa: Not really. I think that whenever it was brought to my attention. It wasn't very long after that Josh went away that I knew.
KELLY: Do you remember the dynamic of being in the house thinking --
Jill: We were sad.
Reality Check: Josh left the house one year after he confessed to molesting Jessa and Jill.  According to the Duggars, they told Jill and Jessa about Josh's confession in the spring of 2002.  They were in the house with Josh for over a year before he left.

Internalization Five:  My parents put in great safeguards that kept us all safe.
Jill: I was going to say not, you know, being alone. My parents said, okay, we're not going to do this hide and seek thing where two people go off and hide together and not baby-sitting the girls.
KELLY: At night in your room?
Jill: Locks on the doors, you know, everybody's in bed, girls in the girls' room, boys in the boys' room. And so, yes. And as a mother now, I look back and I think, you know, my parents did such an amazing job. For me, even when we went through the DHS investigation, they complimented my parents on what an amazing job they did through that process. And so, I think not only taking the legal actions that they did and then going the extra mile and I see as a mom I hope that I can set the same safeguards in my family that they did and, you know, reaching the heart of their children. And not only trying to take care of Josh but us girls.

Reality Check:
Why does everyone have to sleep in a locked bedroom?  Because Josh molested a babysitter on the couch after he told your parents.
Why can't the boys baby sit the girls?  Because Josh molested one of your sisters when she was left home with him after your parents knew about Josh.
Both Michelle and Jill brought up "no playing hide and seek" which scares me that someone else was molested by Josh and it was never reported.
Either way - NOT great parenting skills.

 Internalization Six:  Outsiders agree!  Mom and Dad handled this like champs.
Jill: You know, we had dealt with that when investigation with our family was closed after all those months, they said your parents have done an amazing job. They were praising our parents and said, your home is a safe place for children.
Reality Check:
I'm sure the Duggars will be more than happy to supply the name and rank of anyone who was praising the family after the police report.  I'm not holding my breath, though.

Internalization Seven:  NONE of us were hurt.  Not even the younger girls who remembered.
KELLY: Do you feel like you're speaking on behalf of your other sisters, too? To your younger sisters?
Jill: No, we can't. We can't speak for the other ones. But I feel like as far as --
Jessa: I can speak for the others as far as saying that everybody's angry that it's been publicized.
Jill: Oh, yes. Oh, yes.
KELLY: How about when it comes to forgiving Josh?
Jessa: Oh, everybody is forgiven. We've all forgiven. And we've all moved on.
Jill: That was long ago.
KELLY: How about the baby-sitter? Her too? The baby-sitter as well?
Jessa: Yes. Definitely.

Reality Check:
Jill's real self broke through for a second and she refused to white-wash her sisters' experience. 
Jessa brought forward the party line "Everyone is great!"

Internalization Eight:  We got counseling.  Not the creepy ATI kind; REAL counseling.
Jill: I mean, we all went through professional counseling, but Josh did, too, and.
Jill: . I mean, he had to pay for his own and.
KELLY: Did you have to work that out? I mean, what -- what were you working out there?
Jill: You know, what you do in counseling. You talk about what happened, you talk about the actions that have been taken you. You just -- we really wanted to make sure that everything in our hearts was dealt with.
KELLY: Was it cathartic for you?
Jill: Not anything.
KELLY: Did you - did you solve some things in there?
Jessa: It was - it was really good and I'm really grateful that - that my parents encouraged us to -- to go through that, to get that licensed counseling and all what. I think it was - it was really helpful for us to just kind of close that chapter.
Jill: Closure.

Reality check:Real counseling costs a lot of money.  Josh would have been racking up a $400 dollar bill per month for counseling.  How exactly did he pay that back at 14-15 years old?  Oh, wait.  Illegal remodeling work crew.  Got it.
[I didn't mean to laugh, but "You know, what you do in counseling" is such a classic teen attempt to hide missing an event.  "What did you do at church today?  Oh, you know, prayed." ]

I've seen a psychologist for depression and anxiety for 14 years.  These women have clearly never seen a counselor since the words "feelings" are absent while "closure" is present.  

I hope - for their sake - that they do see a real counselor some day who can help them process the hell they have lived through. 

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