When I was around 11, I had a soccer coach, I was a strong athlete with hopes of going on to play in college. I was one of the best players in the state in middle school. My coach took a special liking to me and frequently was invited to special family gatherings. He became a part of the family as I progressed in the sport. A few years later he told us about the church and invited my whole family to attend. I wasn’t interested but he made it very clear when my parents weren’t around that I would get kicked off the team if I didn’t attend. So every Sunday I went with my parents while the rest of my siblings enjoyed the day off and stayed home. Family outings turned into out of state games which turned into special trips to “soccer camp” with this man.
My parents trusted him as he was a “man of God” and a Bishop at a nearby ward (not mine thankfully). It got to the point where we were staying in hotels rooms together, and although no actual sex happened I was touched and kissed over my entire body. He made it very clear that this was something special between us and my parents didn’t need to know. I knew this was wrong but my parents trusted him and he was a man of God, how could I say no?
It got to the point where I was so depressed and confused about my own sexuality and what was normal that I quit the sport altogether. I had already been pressured into baptism by this man (he would buy me expensive clothes and jewelry in order to keep me going to Church). I felt pressured to please him and got baptized. I continued going because at this point I was stuck. My parents pressured me to attend BYU where I followed the standard normal path, endowment and a temple marriage. This man baptized me and attended my temple sealing and told me how proud he was that I was following God. It wasn’t until I finally told my husband these things that realized what had happened. I didn’t want to believe I had been abused or lied to. I didn’t realize that wasn’t normal or healthy. As far as I know this man is still a Bishop and a coach and is probably doing these things to other woman. I feel so ashamed I didn’t realize it sooner and even more ashamed that I haven’t reported him or told anyone but my husband. But if it happened to me it’s happened to more.