my uncle, the convicted paedophile
It’s not the fact that I’ve shared my life with someone convicted of appalling sexual offences against a child that hurts the most, even as a parent. It’s the fact that you haven’t shown remorse.
I’m the family’s resident bleeding-heart liberal. If you’d said, “I’ve had these urges all my life, I know they’re wrong, but they just got the better of me. I’m ashamed, and will be getting help to make sure I never do it again”, I would have tried to empathise with you.
I don’t want a medal but, bearing in mind the more “creative” punishments suggested by strangers online, it’s pretty reasonable, right?
But, instead, you’ve spun a line about how this was just a series of misunderstandings that snowballed into a taped confession and a decade on the sex offenders register.
One of your offences took place in my parents’ home and now they are afraid to bathe their grandchildren, in case they get convicted of child abuse, too. You did that to them.
I can’t believe you’ve positioned yourself as the victim. Not just ostracising your own child for not brushing things under the carpet, but encouraging others to do the same. You have ruined lives for the sake of sexual gratification, and you’re expecting sympathy.
Maybe a miscarriage of justice has occurred. But if a series of implausible mishaps had led to me being branded a child molester, I’d appeal. You’ve shrugged and acted as if nothing happened. And people have gone along with it.
This family is so good at pretending that stuff never happened, but we all have to live with the consequences of what you did.
And I know that, as time passes, the more we’ll become the troublemakers. Association with you is – if nothing else – potentially professionally ruinous. So, any time that there’s a birthday party or a family wedding, we can’t go if you go. And you will go.
And when my grandmother dies – or anyone dies – my children cannot attend the funeral, because you will be there. If blood were thicker than water, you wouldn’t have put us in this position.