A local conference helping male survivors of childhood sexual abuse will be held Friday, October 4, 2019 at the ABC Recovery Center in Indio.
“I was abused when I was five and a half years old by two neighbors. But that’s not all my abuse…my dad was a heroin addict and growing up he ended up ultimately committing suicide,” said Daniel Marquez.
Like so many male survivors of abuse, it took Marquez years to tell anyone what had happened.
“It started for me when I was four until I was fourteen,” said Robert Teitelbaum, sharing that he too experienced abuse at the hands of perpetrators he trusted as a child. They abused not only him but also his siblings. “I carried with me a lot of anger and carried secrets all those years,” he added.
His wife Carol Teitelbaum, a licensed marriage and family therapist, works to help destigmatize the issue. Together, they’re hosting the 11th annual “It Happens to Boys” conference Friday.
“Sexual abuse is not about having sex. People make that mistake. It’s about having power over someone more vulnerable than you because hurt people hurt people,” said Carol Teitelbaum.
The conference goes from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and will offer resources and feature speakers like Marquez, sharing his experience knowing it might impact others: “It’s pretty wonderful…there are really no words to describe that feeling but grateful,” he said.
“They have helped me to be able to open up and to be able to tell my story and every time I tell my story it makes it a little bit easier to understand what happened,” said Robert Teitelbaum.
Carol Teitelbaum says she also hosts a free counseling group for men at 7 p.m. the first and third Tuesday of every month. “If you are a survivor it was not your fault that you are a survivor. It’s someone else’s fault and you don’t need to carry that shame around,” she said.
There are still spots available for tomorrow’s conference — you can reserve them here. Tickets will also be available at the door.