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Certainly were a few red flags. Couple of things, affairs are always going to be complicated because they generally involve, lies, deceit, sneakiness and disregard for others that erodes trust and often compromises a persons own values. Secondly, I am not justifying your affair buddy’s actions but want to make the point that child abuse is not always unpleasant and sometimes is actually a pleasant activity. NOTE This does not justify it in any way shape of form. I have had survivor clients who are very conflicted because as adults they know it was wrong but they had a special bond with their abuser so they carry a strong emotional connection to the person as well as a lot of confusion and guilt. Problem is we hear terms like ‘rape’ and ‘molestation’ and generate our own hostile aggressive images when it have may have been the opposite which is why someone can be conflicted and miss their abuser. It also explains their lack of boundaries around sex and relationships. When I’ve worked with people with these experiences I’ve encouraged them to become an advocate for their child and begin to view their abuser with a different understanding. Again, just to reiterate, all abuse/exploitation of children is wrong, even if the child is willing and it is not an unpleasant experience. Hopefully you have learned a few things about others, yourself and the value of trust.

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