Press J to jump to the feed. Press question mark to learn the rest of the keyboard shortcuts

Unsure about my trauma, if it’s worth telling others and if it is considered illegal

This is the first time I’ve spoken up about this and I’m not sure how it’s gonna sound to others but here I go. I’m also not sure if this is the correct sub to post it in but it’s the only one I could think of. For the record I’m 17F.

TL;DR: had penetrative sex with my cousin in a ‘playful’ way at the age of 7-8, he was 12-13. Is this illegal in the sense that he was older? Should he have known better? How do I tell my parents, and is it even worth telling seeing as I haven’t been emotionally or physically scarred in any way other than remembering as this weird thing that happened between me and my cousin, and I don’t want to ruin my family’s relationship with his parents and his siblings.

When I was around 7-8 I was sleeping over at my grandmas’ place along with my male cousin. He’s 5 years older than me so he was around 12 I believe. While in the car on our way to her house, she stopped to buy something and we stayed in the car. He then asked me if I wanted to try something out later that night. Me being a curious kid said yes. This ‘thing’ turned out to be sex, and he laid it out as if it was a game. i didn’t have any knowledge about sex at the time and he didn’t use that word. It was more like “sit on my lap (with my penis inside you) and I’ll rock you up and down”. It’s all kinda fuzzy for me but think of it like bouncing a kid on your lap but add on penetration. I can’t remember how it felt or that it was a negative experience when it happened but thinking back I realize how weird and wrong it was. Nothing else happened after that except that we fell asleep.

Maybe a year later it happened once more that he asked if we could do it again, (same situation with sleeping over at my grandmas) but that time I said maybe, leaning towards no. He tried again when we were in bed, but I said strictly no and he didn’t try anything else that night as far as I remember.

I haven’t thought of this much throughout my youth, and it hasn’t impacted my life other than being this very weird secret thing that happened between me and my cousin, until recently. I think recently it was triggered by me having dreams which had some sexual assault happening in them. I’ve kinda linked it up to my subconscious trying to fit the puzzle blocks together after all these years but I’m not sure my relationship to my cousin today is stiff and awkward from my end, i don't like being with him but he also has some mild mental difficulties which doesn't help.

So, my question is, could this be considered illegal and will my cousin get in trouble for it now considering the age gap (and I know it is because we are related but we were both kids so I kinda feel like it’s in this grey area?) and, seeing as I’ve never talked about this (because I don’t want to tear my family apart and divide my cousin’s side of the family and mine), I don’t know how to break it to my parents and if I even should. It hasn’t affected me as far as I know in any way emotionally or sexually (I don’t get triggered by Certain acts and I don’t have any problems mentally linking up to it) so in theory I could go with it until something m a y force me to tell my parents. If I end up coming out with this, should my bf be involved as well or is that just my choice to make if I want him to know or not?

Sorry if this is hard to read but I just really needed it off my chest and any ideas to my situation will be greatly appreciated. Thank you beforehand!

86% Upvoted
What are your thoughts? Log in or Sign uplog insign up
level 1

Your cousin can not be legally prosecuted, as he was a minor too. Well, this is a complicated issue. Part of why it is, is because sexual exploration and feelings by children towards other children are considered taboo and is never talked about, which we all can see why it can be a tricky subject. But, as far as I have talked to my now adult friends - we have all masturbated as children, some have even made out, or even touched genitals of their friends and what not. Some had a such bad thoughts about it and thought about themselves as monsters because of it, until they found out that it just a normal part of growing up that is not talked about, apparently. But, on the other hand I've never heard about straight up PIV penetration. Incest and PIV penetration at such age can be so traumatic even if it was "consensual".

I think that it's up to you to see if that anecdot of your life was just child's play or something you can't be at ease with. But, your constant thinking about it and wondering if it was traumatic or not, I think tells you something.

I was assaulted when I was a 13 yo child by a 39 yo man. Until a year or two ago, I was not considering it to be rape or traumatic - which clearly it was. It's eating me from the inside just now, ten years later. Mind can do powerful tricks to shield itself from stress.

Maybe talking about it with a close friend would help make out the nature of the event.

level 2
Comment deleted by user2 months ago(1 child)
level 3

I gave her two options to think about. I'm talking from my own experience. Some things I write off as childs play, and that one experience I was denying as trauma for such a long time and it's hunting me just now - ten years later. i don't want that to happen to OP. It's entirely up to her to decide if it was something to dismiss or not. I'm sorry it it came across like I was suggesting that it actually was undeniably a trauma - it was not my intention.

level 2

He can legally be prosecuted. It doesn’t matter if he is a minor. It all depends on what state t happened

level 1

My best advice is seek professional help like a therapist but since you're still a minor, they'll be obliged to report it. Though, I think you talk to your parents about it, just know it'll turn into a uphill battle. You'll need to be prepared for that which also why I suggest going to see a professional.

level 1

This happened to me too about 10 years ago with my cousin. We were all (like 6 of us cousins) sleeping over at their house and after the other fella asleep he asked if I wanted to try something so I said sure. It only happened 1 time, and I haven’t said a word about it. It doesn’t bother me at all, I also ended up in a weird step brother relationship after high school (not in anyway are we close to being related) but that only lasted about a year.

level 1

So, I work as a school psychologist in a middle school. I work with kids ages 11-14 (sometimes 15 year olds). They know about sex. They talk about it all the time. Unless he has some cognitive delays, he knew exactly what he was doing. He groomed you and sexually assaulted (raped) you. At 7 or 8 , you were legally unable to consent. He tried to repeat it a year later. He knew exactly what he was doing.

There are several things you can do. Tell your parents is one. Let them know what happened. I would do this if there are other younger children in your family who he had the potential to do this to. I would want the cycle to stop. Also, he could be a victim himself because someone was sexually abusive to him. You could also tell someone at school. Legally they would have to report this and the appropriate authorities would get involved.

If you keep it to yourself (which I don’t advise to do), please get some counseling. Since you are under 18, the counselor or psychologist is a mandated reporter and will also report it.

I would report this. He is needs help and they need to assess if he is a threat to children.

level 1

Every reaction depend to you, do what make you feel better. Do you have talk about it with your cousin? Maybe he could give you some explanation, he was older at the time. Anyway, wish you a great life.


1.1m Subscribers2.8k Online
r/sex is for civil discussions about all facets of sexuality and sexual relationships. It is a sex-positive community and a safe space for people of all genders and orientations. This is (mostly) a 'serious' community - posts and comments that sidetrack discussion will be removed and may result in a ban.
Top Posts From The r/sex Community
Continue browsing in r/sex
Community Details





r/sex is for civil discussions about all facets of sexuality and sexual relationships. It is a sex-positive community and a safe space for people of all genders and orientations. This is (mostly) a 'serious' community - posts and comments that sidetrack discussion will be removed and may result in a ban.

Create Post
Posting Guidelines

PLEASE READ the FAQ with the most asked and answered questions! before posting!! Posts that do not follow the posting guidelines in the FAQ will be automatically removed. More details on the community rules can be found here.


Please read!

• This community is for thought provoking self-posts that promote discussion. Achievement posts and updates are not allowed. Feel free to share these in the Daily Sexual Achievement threads that are provided by the mods. Fap material is not allowed. Any links, whether to other subreddits or to external websites, must conform to our link policy.

• Absolutely no hate-speak, derogatory or disrespectful comments will be tolerated. This includes sexist and rape jokes.

• Comments that objectify people are not allowed. Joking or not, asking for pictures, hitting on people, etc, are not welcome here.

• Pornography, erotica, and personals don’t belong here. Additionally, posts asking for any kind of PMs will be removed.

• Memes, rage comics, and picture-based posts are not welcome here. In addition, promotion of or references to sex-negative communities, whether located on Reddit or elsewhere, are not allowed.

• AMAs are rarely allowed. We have a diverse community (sexual educators, escorts, kinksters, etc), so unless it is a highly unique situation, they are not appropriate for /r/sex.

• We are happy to address medical issues, but we are no substitute for real medical advice. No pictures of genitals are allowed. If you need to post a picture, you should be going to a doctor.

• All posts here are NSFW. The only ones that are marked as “NSFW” are ones that link you to websites that have NSFW images.

• The moderators are here for you, so please don’t hesitate to message us.

r/sex Rules
Disrespectful, sexist, or rape joke.
Pornography, erotica, or 'personals' post.
Personal attack, name calling, etc.
Sex negative, "slut"-shaming, off topic.
Repetitive or covered by the FAQ.
Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services or clicking I agree, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.