Does What Happened To Me Meet The Definition Of Molestation?

Published: March 19, 2014
Dear Does What Happened To Me Meet The Definition Of Molestation?,

The other day I had to have a psychiatric evaluation and the doctor asked if I had ever been molested. I don't actually know if what happened to me meets the criteria for "molestation," if there is any criteria. Anyway, it happened when I was 12-13 and it was a family friend who would always be putting his hands under my shirt and be touching my (barely present) breasts. I don't know if that counts, and I was too afraid to ask my doctor. Can you please tell me, or at least explain the actual definition of molestation?

Dear Does What Happened To Me Meet The Definition Of Molestation?,

According to the Child Molestation Research & Prevention Institute, “Child molestation is the act of sexually touching a child.” That said, for a family friend to have placed his hands under your shirt and touch you breasts (whether they were developed or not at the time doesn’t matter) would be considered a form of being molested.

TeenHealthFX cannot know to what extent this experience has impacted your thoughts, feelings or behaviors. But if you are meeting with a psychiatrist, or any other type of mental health professional, it would be helpful to bring it up in case you do have any negative thoughts or feelings connected to these experiences with this man that need to be processed. It would also be helpful for your parents to know what happened. For one thing, they need to ensure you are not in his presence again. Second, they need to decide if they want to take any legal action against him as he broke the law. And most importantly they need to be aware so they can provide you with whatever help or support you need to deal with this.