At a very young age, Bethany was sexually abused by her biological father. When Bethany’s mother learned about the abuse, she divorced Bethany’s father. Bethany began having stomach problems because of the stress and she was referred to the Children’s Advocacy Center in Blountville.
“The environment at the CAC was remarkable and allowed me to express myself through many different types of outlets,” Bethany said. “I was able to draw or paint, or simply sit and talk one-on-one with a counselor. I began to develop a personal relationship with my counselor. As I grew closer to my counselor, I began to open up about my past and was willing to talk more about it and relive some of the past in order to see my future more clearly.”
Today, Bethany is a young adult who wants to be a Christian counselor and give back to those who helped her.
“I want my life to be a testimony in order to show young girls and boys who have been through similar things that life can go on as normal, and overcoming the terrifying past is one more step towards an incredible future,” she said.
Child abuse has long been a major problem and a major concern. In 2010, the Children’s Advocacy Center of Sullivan County, which opened its doors 20 years ago, had 1,069 cases of alleged child abuse reviewed by its Child Protective Investigation Team (CPIT).
Read the expanded version of this report in the print edition or the enhanced electronic version of the Kingsport Times-News.